Hi everyone! Hope all is well with you all. It’s still quite cold and damp in my neck of the woods. The rain and dampness has made me crave comforting baked goods so I’ve been revamping my banana bread. It’s just a cold, cold Spring!
I’ve enjoyed baking and creating lots of cozy meals lately. It’s all about the comfort meals this time of year. I have so many recipes to share with you all this year and I’m hoping to get them posted soon. I’ve been recipe testing and trying my best to create healthy versions of my favourite meals. Many of them have been a huge success but a few still need to be tweaked a tad.
I’ve recreated my original banana bread and made it as healthy as possible without sacrificing the taste of this epic treat. I’m so very happy with the result! This is the most often made treat at my house. It’s easy to make, includes staple ingredients that pretty much everyone has on hand and it’s guilt free. It’s healthy and delicious! No need to have any guilt about indulging in this banana bread. You’re fueling your body with nutritious ingredients instead of the typical store bought version that’s full of sugar and fat.
I also love using this recipe for mini muffins and mini loafs. Just bake them for a shorter period of time. I love how versatile this recipe is.
I really tried to break this recipe down to minimal ingredients so that everyone can feel like they can make it easily. It doesn’t matter what your skill level is in the kitchen either. This recipe is so easy that anyone can make it, and end up with a perfect snack. I also like to create meals that children can make as well. My son is usually my assistant in the kitchen. I want him to learn the importance of making home cooked meals and desserts. My recipes are easy enough for him to help me with and learn some skills. If you have little ones too, then you can definitely make this recipe with them!
My recipe is less calorie rich than my original version. I decided to eliminate the nuts and oil to save on calories. I realized that they were honestly unnecessary ingredients in the recipe. Any type of oil is still refined and not healthy by any means. It provides no nutritional benefits and makes baked goods very calorie rich. I know the hype right now is eat all the fat you can because it’s said to be healthy for us in our diet. The reality is, it’s not. Yes we need some fat in our diet but it really should be from the whole food source such a yummy avocado.
I will add my video version of this recipe below. I know a lot of you enjoy watching the recipe video on my YouTube channel. Thank you for the continued support on my channel. I really appreciate it. If you haven’t already Subscribed to my channel then please consider doing so if you enjoy health and wellness videos. I make healthy yet satisfying meals on my channel and provide wellness tips as well.
Ok so let’s get to the good part …
Here is probably one of my most favourite recipes that I’ve ever created! I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!
Healthy Guilt Free Banana Bread
2 cups of oat flour
1 cup of oats
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1/4 cup hemp hearts (optional)
2 Tbsp. Ground Flax
Optional : 1/4 – 1/3 cup Vegan Chocolate chips/chocolate chunks or cacao nibs
6 Tbsp. Warm Water
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 of a cup of plant-based milk
3 regular sized spotty bananas, mashed
1/3 of a cup of sugar. I use coconut sugar, brown sugar, or maple sugar.
* Preheat oven to 350 F *
1. In a large bowl place 2 cups of oat flour and 1 cup of oats. Next add in 1 teaspoon of baking powder and 1/3 cup sugar of choice. Combine well. Toss in the 1/4 cup of hemp hearts if you are using them in your banana loaf.
2. Add 2 tablespoons of flax meal to a small bowl with 6 tablespoons of warm water. Mix well and allow to thicken up
3. In another large bowl mash three spotty bananas well. Add in 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract and the 1/2 cup of plant-based milk. Mix well.
4. Add the flax egg into the wet ingredients. I use a fork to mix it well.
5. Next add the wet ingredients into the dry and combine everything very well.
6. Transfer your batter into your baking dishes or loaf pans. Bake at 350° for approximately 30 to 40 minutes.
Let me know if you try my recipe out in the comments below! Have a wonderful week everyone!
Health, Joy & Positive Vibes,
We are definitely in the heart of the fall season and cozy recipes are required! It’s the time of year where we feel the need for those comfort meals as the days get darker, quieter and colder. We crave the cozy warm recipes that just make us feel good inside. This is my favourite season to create recipes. I get so inspired by all the foods in season during this time. Everything looks absolutely delicious and I start to think of all the recipes I want to try making. It’s just simply a wonderful time of year!
Many people will say that during this time of year they typically put on weight because they eat more decadent meals. Some say they crave “bad” foods. I feel like anything that’s a favourite cozy fall meal can be made into a healthier version. You can enjoy the wonderful much loved meal and still stay on track with wellness goals. I love to create meals that are guilt free and healthy but still taste fabulous. I know I’ve said this before but you CAN have it all! No more beating yourself up about eating naughty meals! You just have to get in the mindset of adjusting the recipe to meet your health and wellness goals. Also I’d like to add that if you do enjoy indulgent meals here and there, that’s also totally ok. It’s all about balance in life. I say just clean up your act and eat as clean as possible after that meal. It will be just fine.
I created this very simple butternut squash soup recipe using wholesome ingredients and it tastes fantastic. This recipe is a crowd pleaser and it’s perfect for entertaining during the holiday season as well. Now that covid restrictions have lightened up and families can get together we can finally start having guests over! Wow this is exciting! Everyone will enjoy this soup! My feedback after posting this recipe on my YouTube channel was excellent. I feel so good knowing that people are enjoying this hearty yet healthy soup!
Squash is abundant in every grocery store or farmer’s market this time of year. It’s definitely easy to find because they seem to be the star of the show in October and on into the colder months. Squash can be inexpensive as well and it’s quite hearty. You can make this whole recipe using just one butternut squash. A little goes a long way. My recipe will serve 4 people, so if you want to make it for a larger gathering then just make sure you pick up extra squash. I bought mine from Costco and they actually came in a two pack which is great. They worked out to 3.5 lbs each.
What if you don’t have fresh produce available to you? Depending on where you live or your budget you might not be able to get fresh squash. That’s totally ok! You can definitely use canned squash of any variety to make this recipe if needed. They do sell butternut squash in cans so this might be a good solution for you. You can also use frozen squash if that’s all you can find as well. Find whatever works for you because my recipe is very adaptable. Creating these healthier options doesn’t have to be complicated. I find sometimes we get into these rigid rules when cooking and that is just way too stressful. We tend to over complicate things and it doesn’t have to be this way.
Butternut Squash is full of Vitamins, Fiber and Antioxidants. It’s loaded with vitamin C, vitamin A, and B Vitamin’s as well. It’s rich with magnesium and potassium which plays an important role for us in our bone health. It’s so nice to know that something so delicious is actually really beneficial to our health.
I decided to add some apples to this recipe because we had picked a whole bunch from our tree in the backyard. They needed to be used up and they taste so incredibly good! I’m not sure what the variety is but they grow perfect and I love how sweet they are. I don’t put any pesticides on my tree and they still turn out perfect. No bugs either! The only battle I have is the Toronto raccoons eating them on the tree and then throwing half away onto the ground. They basically eat half of the apple and throw away the rest! Ugh! Why can’t they just eat the whole thing?
I hope you enjoy my easy Butternut Squash Soup recipe. Let me know if you make it and if you make an adjustments to the recipe. I will post the video version of this recipe below if you would like to watch me cook this lovely soup. Enjoy this amazing time of year and the gorgeous fall season!
Easy Butternut Squash Soup
⁃ 1 Butternut Squash, peeled & chopped Look for one around 3.5 lbs.
⁃ 1 tbsp. Bouillon
⁃ 4 1/4 cups water
⁃ 1/2 onion, chopped
⁃ 3 medium sized apples, chopped
⁃ 3 cloves of garlic
Herbs & Spices:
⁃ Curry powder
⁃ Onion powder
⁃ Cumin powder
⁃ Dry Oregano
⁃ Black pepper
⁃ Himalayan pink salt
1. Preheat oven to 400F
3. Peel & chop the butternut squash. Add it to a lined baking pan.
4. Peel and chop apples and add them to the baking pan.
5. Chop up onion and peel garlic cloves. Toss into the pan. Add the spices to the mixture as well.
6. Pop the baking pan into the oven at 400F for 30 minutes. I gave it a mix at the half way mark.
7. Add the butternut squash mixture to a large pot. Add the bouillon, and water as well.
8. Use a hand blender to purée the soup or add it in batches to a blender.
9. Add more spices if necessary according to you taste.
10. Add the soup to bowls and enjoy!
Note: garnish with some pumpkin or squash seeds on top if desired.
Health, Joy & Positive Vibes,
I love making No Waste Quick & Easy Meals. I absolutely hate wasting food! Anyone else buy loads of food and a week or two later you start tossing it in the trash or organic bin? It’s just so wasteful.
This hurts our wallet, health and our planet.
I vowed to start changing this bad habit. I didn’t want to continue throwing out perfectly good food because I didn’t plan my meals well enough. It was also starting to get too costly which is not ok when you really want to buckle down and save money for a rainy day. Saving money is on my top priority list this year.
I do use an organic compost bin so at least the food waste isn’t going in the trash can. It is however still horribly wrong and wasteful. I can’t justify buying food to just toss into my compost bin. Why is it so hard to use up everything we buy? I work long 12 hours shifts. A stretch of days go by where I can’t cook anything. I batch cook staple foods like rice and potatoes before I start all my shifts because thats super easy. I just add a veggie to it for my work lunches. I typically make frozen veggies on those days. I definitely don’t have the energy or will power to cook much more than that on those days!
Late last year I decided that I had to make a big change. I made the commitment to be more mindful of what I’m buying at the grocery store. No I don’t need every veggie on every single shopping trip! This was a hard thing to change because I really embrace the eat the rainbow lifestyle. Now I limit myself to what I truly need to make a meal or two with.
Making these changes was difficult at first and even now I sometimes find goodies in the fridge that I’ve missed. I just make a meal out of these sad overripe veggies and it always turns out great! I feel like almost always something can be done with them. It might not be the best meal but it will be healthy and taste good. Of course there will always be times where the odd thing is too far gone to use. I just try my best to avoid it as much as possible.
I create meals using only a few ingredients these days that I quickly grab in the fridge. I use up whatever needs to be eaten first and go from there. I love this way of cooking. No waste meals are my absolute favorite now. It forces me to think outside the box and get creative. I’m actually really enjoying cooking this way!
No waste cooking has also made me get back to basics and eat more simply. I’m able to save a lot of time by eating this way. I’m not spending endless hours in the kitchen. Great cooking doesn’t have to be fussy and complicated.
I hope that this inspired you to reduce food waste. Join me this year as I change myself to continue my no waste meals and reduce food waste in our homes!
Catch me on VeganMommyDee’s Life on YouTube. Consider subscribing if you enjoy health, wellness content and easy to cook recipes.
Health, Joy & Positive Vibes,
Do you think you can pull together real meals with Dollar Store items? I was pretty skeptical myself. I didn’t think they had much to offer. I also worried that I wouldn’t find oil free items there as well.
Where I live in Canada our Dollar Stores don’t have freezer sections sadly. Pre COVID-19 days, we crossed the border to shop I was amazed to find out that the Dollar Stores in the USA have freezer sections. They keep them stocked with some pretty amazing choices too! If your Dollar Store has a freezer then this challenge will be much easier for you. It will provide you much more to work with.
Here in Canada it’s not uncommon to find $3.00 and $4.00 items at the Dollar Store. I’m not sure why we even call it the Dollar Store anymore. It’s actually pretty hard to find $1.00 items these days.
I challenged myself to find $1-$2 items that I could pull a meal off with. I wanted to make sure each meal I made was between three and four servings as well. I wanted these meals to be something a family could enjoy or to have leftovers for lunches. Meal prepping is always such a great time saver! I’m not going to say I had tons of choices but honestly it wasn’t that bad at all. I was surprised at what I was able to find. I had to think outside the box and try creating family meals out of just a few ingredients. It’s definitely possible with a little thought and effort.
Many of us are trying to cut food costs and save some money. Shopping at the Dollar Store can help you save money and still put together some healthy meals. I plan on continuing to tinker in the kitchen and create more yummy inexpensive meals. It’s become a challenge that I’m now quite enjoying. I wonder what else I can come up with?
I don’t consume any added oil in my diet so I also had to make sure that foods were compliant. I originally wanted to make a pasta using traditional tomato sauce but every brand had canola oil in it. I had to pass on that idea and think of something else. I wanted to make a comfort meal using pasta. I decided to make my own healthy sauce. I threw only a few ingredients together and came up with a yummy pea sauce. This idea was actually way better and this sauce has become a staple in our house now!
I’ll add my video where I made this yummy recipe in this post so you can see how I made it. I made a Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner in the video below. If you haven’t already Subscribed to my YouTube Channel please consider doing so now. That way you don’t miss any upcoming recipes videos!
I hope this inspired you to visit your local dollar store. Grab some staple ingredients and I bet you can create some great meals too! Let me know what you come up with in the comments. If you recreate my recipes please tag me on IG. I love seeing you guys make my recipes. It brings me so much joy!
Health, Joy & Positive Vibes,
I’m enjoying my veggie garden and it’s abundance this year more than ever. With COVID-19 happening I still only shop when necessary. I love being able to grow my own veggies so I don’t have to buy as much produce at the grocery store. Being able to just walk outside and pick my own veggies is the best feeling ever!
I also love how fresh my home grown produce is. Honestly it even tastes better! Currently I’m obsessed about how my Green peppers taste. I feel so grateful to be able to grow these healthy foods. I feel so energetic and happy during this time of year. It’s probably because of a combination of things I’m sure. I eat even healthier, fresher and more organic food than other times of year for starters. I feel way more active as I’m busy gardening and taking a couple long walks daily. The amount of vitamin D I’m also getting daily makes a huge difference in my wellness.Continue reading
I’m often making quick meals on the go. I feel like most people can relate. We’re all short on time and in a rush to make fast and easy meals. The hard part is creating meals that are healthy so we aren’t tempted to eat anything we can get our hands on. Worst still is grabbing takeout and fast food when we’re in a rush.
I find by sticking to some staple meals I’m able to quickly whip them together in no time at all. By always keeping staple items on hand at home it will make your life so much easier. I also make bigger batches of rice, baked oats and porridge so I have left overs for the next day. I love taking left over porridge to work for breakfast and then I add some berries to it and hemp hearts. That will keep me feeling full long and I wont have to spend money buying an unhealthy breakfast option on the go.
I always make extra sweet potato, white or yellow potatoes in my pressure cooker too. I just use the extra for lunch the next day for my hubby and I. I just add some seasoning to it and eat it with a hearty salad. It’s a simple, fast and nutritious meal!
I love making things like chia pudding in a Mason jar too. I make a few days worth of chia pudding and then we have the perfect breakfast for work or a great go to snack. I don’t have to worry about what to make because that meal is covered. Simple tips like this help keep us on track and because it’s so nutritious it will give us ample energy for our busy lives!
I’ve added below my new YouTube video. It’s another What I Eat in a Day video This edition is Quick Meal Ideas that are healthy and super fast to create.
If you haven’t already Subscribed to my channel please do. I’d greatly appreciate the support. Also don’t forget to follow my blog for future posts and follow me across social media.
Have a wonderful weekend everyone!
Health, Joy and Positive Vibes,
I put up a new video on my YouTube channel! People are always curious about what I eat so I decided to do a video!
Please Like & Subscribe and help support health and wellness!
I appreciate each and every one of you!