Tag Archives: cake

Zucchini Bread Protein Breakfast Loaves

31 May

Do you tend to over-buy produce because it’s in season and on sale? I am notorious for this, which means that my freezer usually ends up stocked full of unmarked containers holding various chopped fruits and vegetables. A family friend has rhubarb to unload? I’ll take the lot! Zucchini season? Give me all of it! Tables of fresh berries at the farmer’s market? I’ll buy as much as I can hold!

This recipe came about when I remembered a container of zucchini in my freezer that I had shredded prior to storing. In an effort to make something healthy, rich in protein, and chock full of flavor, I developed a vegan, gluten-free, no sugar added version of zucchini bread.

Zucchini Bread Protein Breakfast Loaves | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

Now, my Oma’s zucchini bread is and will always be the absolute best. But it’s also a treat that I can’t justify as a regular breakfast food. These mini loaves, however, are perfect for breakfast! They contain just the right balance of carbs, fat, protein and fiber to keep you full and satisfied until lunch time. They also make great snacks to enjoy pre- or post-workout. It’s basically an acceptable and healthful way to eat “cake” anytime throughout the day!

Bake up these quick & easy zucchini bread protein breakfast loaves the next time you have too much zucchini around – you’ll definitely be glad you did! I enjoyed one as pre-run fuel for the Chocoholic 5K I did this weekend with my mom. I ran it, finished, and went back in to walk with mom as she finished. We both managed to beat our own time goals! I suspect it was because chocolate was promised at the end 🙂

Zucchini Bread Protein Breakfast Loaves | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

Zucchini Bread Protein Breakfast Loaves | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

Finally, check out the sharing buttons below this post – I’ve (finally) added a YUM button, so if you’re on Yummly, be sure to save your favorite recipes to your Recipe Box! If you’re not signed up, I highly recommend it – Yummly is the perfect place to discover and save recipes that are just right for you.

Zucchini Bread Protein Breakfast Loaves
Makes 7 mini loaves

  • 1 C shredded zucchini, water squeezed or drained out
  • 8 oz unsweetened, natural applesauce
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 1 egg, whisked
  • 6 tbsp water or nondairy milk
  • 1-1/2 C oat flour (grind oats in your food processor)
  • 1/2 C almond flour
  • 1 scoop (30g) vanilla protein powder (preferably plant-based)
  • 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • sea salt
  • 1/3 C mini chocolate chips or chopped cacao nibs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a mini loaf pan with olive oil PAM. No mini loaf pan? Just make muffins!

In a large bowl, mix together the shredded zucchini, applesauce, melted coconut oil, egg, and water. Mix in all the dry ingredients until thoroughly combined. Finally, fold in the mini chocolate chips.

Scoop batter into greased mini loaf (or muffin) pan. You will get 7 loaves, with the cavities filled about 3/4 up.

Bake at 350 for 25 min. Remove from oven and let cool 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Store cooled loaves in the fridge in an airtight container up to 5 days, or freeze in freezer bags for a couple months. If frozen, let thaw in the fridge overnight before eating for breakfast.

Linking up with Running on Happy & The Fit Foodie Mama, and Confessions of a Mother Runner & A Whisk and Two Wands for #MeatlessMonday and Ilka’s Blog and Marathons & Motivation for Sunday Fitness & Food Linkup!

Belgian Ale Banana Cupcakes with Dark Chocolate Ganache Frosting

3 May

The word is getting out! Yep – I love to bake, and it’s even more fun when those baked goods are packed with booze 😉 This past weekend, my friend recommended my cupcakes for a joint bachelorette & birthday party. The bride-to-be wanted to surprise her sister, who was celebrating a birthday, with beer-infused cupcakes.

As soon as I learned that the birthday girl’s favorite beer is the Belgian Tripel style, I knew what I had to do: bake La Fin Du Monde into a cupcake and smother it with creamy, dreamy dark chocolate ganache frosting and a sprinkling of pink sea salt. For the non-beer lovers out there, La Fin Du Monde is a Belgian ale from Canadian brewery Unibroue. It’s effervescent, sweet, banana-y, clove-y and rather high in alcohol content. Certainly an obvious choice to bake into, and soak onto, cupcakes!

Belgian Ale Banana Cupcakes with Dark Chocolate Ganache Frosting | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

With that flavor profile in mind, I packed these treats with fresh bananas and ground clove. I view the frosting almost as a pairing – like what you’d get at a good beer bar. And what goes better with banana than dark chocolate? So of course, I had to frost these cakes with my simple yet indulgent dark chocolate ganache frosting. Whipped to perfection, this frosting is piped on and sprinkled lightly with sea salt, to bring out the natural sweetness of the chocolate.

Belgian Ale Banana Cupcakes with Dark Chocolate Ganache Frosting | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

The end result? Let’s just say I could SMELL the beer in these goodies as they baked in the oven. The cakes are sweet, with hints of banana and clove, and you can absolutely taste the inclusion of the beer. Especially because I employ the “poke and soak” method post-baking: poke each cupcake with a skewer or chopstick and soak 1/2 tsp beer right on top. It really provides that extra punch, which is just to die for. Which is good, considering that La Fin Du Monde is French for “end of the world.”

Buy a bottle of Belgian ale, bake these cupcakes, and impress everyone at your next party!

Belgian Ale Banana Cupcakes with Dark Chocolate Ganache Frosting

Makes 24 cupcakes

Dark Chocolate Ganache Frosting:

  • 1-1/4 C heavy whipping cream
  • 15 oz dark baking chocolate, chopped
  • 3 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp flaked sea salt

Heat heavy cream in a pan on medium heat until it comes to a boil.

Remove from heat and stir in the chopped baking chocolate until smooth. Stir in the vanilla.

Transfer the chocolate to the bowl of your stand mixer and allow to cool in the refrigerator for one hour. Bake the cupcakes while this chills.

Belgian Ale Banana Cupcakes:

  • ¾ C butter, room temperature
  • 1 C white sugar
  • ¾ C brown sugar
  • 2-1/2 C flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground clove
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 C La Fin du Monde Belgian Tripel beer + more to soak
  • ¼ C milk
  • 2 medium bananas

Preheat oven to 350. Line two muffin tins with paper liners.

Beat butter with sugars until creamy.

In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and ground clove.

In another bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the eggs with vanilla, beer, milk, and mashed bananas.

Alternate adding the dry and the wet ingredients to the butter-sugar mixture. Beat until just combined.

Scoop batter into 24 lined muffin tins.

Reduce the oven temperature to 325 and bake for 18-23 minutes, rotating the tins halfway through baking. Let cool completely before frosting. TIP: speed this up by popping the cupcakes, still in the baking tins, straight into the freezer for 15 minutes.

Poke four holes into the top of each cupcake using a skewer or chopstick. Spoon 1/2 teaspoon additional beer on top and allow to soak in.

While the cupcakes cool and soak, whip up the ganache frosting.

Use the paddle attachment with your stand mixer and beat the ganache for 5 minutes on medium speed, or until it starts to create stiff peaks. Scoop the whipped ganache into a piping bag fitted with a tip of your choice. Pipe onto cooled cupcakes and sprinkle with flaked sea salt. Refrigerate until ready to serve, allowing 30 minutes out of the fridge before enjoying.

Belgian Ale Banana Cupcakes with Dark Chocolate Ganache Frosting | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

Cellular Peptide Cake with Mint Frosting (aka dessert for a Star Trek Party!)

15 Apr

“Live Long and Prosper!” was exchanged frequently at my house this past weekend. My boyfriend and I, along with 14 of our friends, celebrated a pre-holiday that all Trekkies should know: First Contact Day. Yep, the Star Trek movie, First Contact, predicts that in 2063, an alien race will decide finally to make contact with humans on Earth. A much-anticipated event that requires drinks and food of all kinds.

Ok, not ALL kinds, but Star Trek kinds! We basically hosted the nerdiest Trek party around – complete with a viewing of the aforementioned movie and other Star Trek episodes; our living room was decorated to look like we had gone to Red Alert; guests were wearing all sorts of Trek garb (including my new set of Captain’s pips from Chris!!); and themed treats to indulge in while partying it up.

Cellular Peptide Cake with Mint Frosting (aka dessert for a Star Trek Party!) | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

Last year, I shared a few of those recipes, such as Captain Sisko’s Ratamba Stew, Constable Odo’s Bruschetta, and the blue-hued Romulan Ale. This year, I baked some Cookies. Earl Grey. Sweet., a Cellular Peptide cake, and we even had Fuzzy Tribbles (in both cake bite and adult beverage form).

Cellular Peptide cake comes from an episode in The Next Generation, “Phantasms,” where the android Data kind of loses his mind and starts having dreams, which is uncharacteristic of androids. One of the most bizarre scenes is when he approaches the Klingon Worf, who states he’s eating a “cellular peptide cake, with mint frosting.” Ok, if that wasn’t strange enough, we come to find out this “cake” is really the Counselor Troi in cake form! Check out the video clip. It’s weird.

But the point is: there’s cake! In the episode, the cake appears to be a white or yellow vanilla cake. But because Deanna Troi LOVES chocolate so much, I opted for a chocolate cake. In the mood to keep things somewhat healthy, I found a healthy version of a Texas sheet cake on Chocolate Covered Katie’s blog – it’s the perfect size for a cake that needs to be shaped into a human torso without it being overly huge.

To make the mint frosting, I opted for icing made with coconut oil, powdered sugar, milk and peppermint extract. Get this: this frosting is made in the FOOD PROCESSOR. I swear, it was done in less than 5 minutes. I can’t rave enough about this! And it’s coconut oil, so that’s totally healthy, right? 🙂

Some food coloring and artistic patience later, I’ve got a cellular peptide cake with mint frosting. One friend commented that the final product tastes like a cake version of Thin Mints. And she was right!! So whether you’re an equally huge nerd, or just like the flavor of Thin Mints, this cake is totally for you. Throw on an episode of Star Trek and get baking! Neelix would want you to 🙂

Cellular Peptide Cake with Mint Frosting (aka Thin Mint Cake)

Serves 20

First, make this healthier Texas Sheet Cake, from Chocolate Covered Katie. (I made no alterations to her recipe, so just follow along! Be sure you use a 9×13″ rimmed baking sheet – nothing larger.)

Let the cake cool completely in the baking sheet. Make the frosting in the meantime.

Mint Frosting

  • ½ C coconut oil, room temperature – you want this in a solid state
  • 3 C powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp peppermint extract
  • 1/4 C nondairy milk
  • Optional: food coloring

Combine the coconut oil, sugar, extract and milk in your food processor. Cover and blend until it mixes together completely. Add more milk as necessary to keep the frosting moving.

If using food coloring for cellular peptide cake, transfer 2/3 frosting to one bowl, and 1/3 frosting to another. Color the larger amount to make it a deep blue, like Counselor Troi’s uniform. Color the smaller amount with equal parts green and red food coloring to achieve a dark gray (or buy black food coloring). Mix well until the colors are incorporated throughout.

For cellular peptide cake, you’ll want to trim the cake to make it look like a torso – basically like a T-shirt. Cut a V-neck, cut some shoulders, and trim a half inch off either side of the “stomach” area.

Scoop colored frostings into two separate plastic sandwich or piping bags. Follow my picture or one online to achieve the look of Deanna Troi. I used three white chocolate chips to represent her Lt. Commander status pips (the third one of which I added a dot of the gray frosting to signify that it was a hollow pip).

Tip: pipe a border on the edges of the cake first, and fill it in from there. The frosting is fluid enough that the piping lines will set and blend into each other for a seamless finished product.

If you’re just making this as a tasty Thin Mint cake, spread the plain white frosting over the entire cake – no need to trim anything off of it! Optional: dye the frosting green to evoke a minty look. Let it set an hour before slicing and enjoying.

Cellular Peptide Cake with Mint Frosting (aka dessert for a Star Trek Party!) | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

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