Tag Archives: unprocessed

Piña Colada Oat Muffins {vegan}

30 Oct

I used to love those fancy, frozen drinks. Packed with flavor (sugar) and booze (rail rum/tequila), those blended drinks, such as piña coladas and margaritas were my go-to at Mexican restaurants. Luckily, I have since seen the error of my ways. These drinks are loaded with sugars, fats and artificial flavorings. I no longer opt for the tall piña coladas or the brightly colored margaritas. Instead, I opt for a REAL margarita or nothing at all.

Still, those flavors are hard to resist. So in the spirit of #unprocessed, I whipped up these healthy piña colada muffins. Fresh pineapple, real coconut milk and shreds, spiced rum and actual oats make these taste like the guilt-inducing drink, but without all the bad stuff! They’re fresh, fun and just a little bit naughty, spiked with a bit of rum. Oh, and they’re vegan! And whole wheat! And low in sugar! Seriously, what could be better?

Piña Colada Oat Muffins | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

Piña Colada Oat Muffins
Makes 24 muffins

  • 2 C pureed pineapple (I used one fresh pineapple)
  • 1 C canned coconut milk
  • 4 tbsp spiced rum
  • 2-1/2 C old-fashioned oats
  • 2 C whole wheat flour
  • 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 C brown sugar
  • 12 packets stevia (33.6 oz or 960g)
  • 2 flax eggs (2 tbsp flaxseed meal + 4 tbsp water, let stand 5 minutes)
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tsp coconut extract

Preheat oven to 375°. Line two muffin pans with papers.

Combine pineapple puree, coconut milk and rum in a large bowl. Stir in the oats. Let sit for 1-2 hours.

Gently mix in the rest of the ingredients and stir until just combined.

Scoop into prepared muffin cups, until they’re nearly full, and bake for 15-20 minutes.

Piña Colada Oat Muffins | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

2 Ingredient Fig Newton Bites

12 Oct

I ran 11 miles on Saturday. 11 long miles on what was thankfully a gorgeous day. I’ve recently learned that on such long runs, water just doesn’t cut it. So I brought a few dates, tucked into the pocket of my running tights.

While those dates were good, it got me thinking that I need to create a (simple) snack that I could eat before or immediately after a run – one that’s unprocessed, easy to make, and tastes good. Recalling a “fig newton” bar I’d eaten a while ago, I wanted to recreate the flavor and health that it combined.

These bites are easy – they’re made of TWO ingredients: walnuts and figs. They’re loaded with healthy fats, fiber, sugars, carbs and just a little protein – the nutrients needed to fuel a run, or quickly recover while you prepare a bigger meal. What’s better: these keep well in the fridge or freezer, and taste absolutely amazing! Don’t let dried figs scare you – puree them with some walnuts, and you’ve got a wonderful snack.

2 Ingredient Fig Newton Bites
Makes 20 bites

1.5 C walnut halves
1 package whole dried figs

Use a food processor (a blender won’t work well) and pulse together the walnuts and figs. You’ll need to scrape down the bowl sides a few times, and it will take at least 5 minutes until a dough-like consistency forms.

Scoop spoonfuls of the dough into a mini muffin tin, or spread into a thin layer in an 8×8″ glass pan, lined with parchment paper, to be cut into bars.

Freeze the bites (or bars) for a few hours, but overnight is best. Transfer to a container and keep refrigerated, to maintain shape.

Eat one or two before a workout, or as a midday snack.

Triple Pepper and Tempeh Stir Fry

7 Oct

A lesson from six days into October #unprocessed this year: most sauces are filled with sugars, chemicals, salt, and unnecessary fats.

I was craving an Asian-themed dish for dinner, and decided a quick stir fry was perfect for the evening’s plans. Most of the recipes out there, however, require a variety of store-bought sauces: hoisin sauce, sriracha sauce, teriyaki sauce, etc. But all of these contain the worst possible ingredients!

Still in the mood for a stir fry, I took a second look at the bottles’ ingredients, and decided I could replicate the flavors from simple ingredients in my pantry. In fact, it’s pretty darn simple to make your own sauces, be they for barbeque, stir fry, marinade, dressings, or dipping!

Triple Pepper and Tempeh Stir Fry | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

A combination of from-scratch stir fry sauce, THREE types of peppers, and protein-rich vegan tempeh make this a dinner to please everyone. It’s also super quick to make, so you can enjoy it on even the busiest night of the week!

Triple Pepper and Tempeh Stir Fry
Serves 4

  • 1 C quinoa
  • 2 C water

Stir Fry Sauce:

  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 3 tbsp Bragg’s amino acids
  • 1 tbsp molasses
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp ginger powder
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp chili pepper flakes
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Triple Pepper & Tempeh:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 package organic tempeh, cut into small cubes, such as Westsoy Tempeh
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 yellow pepper, diced
  • 2 sweet orange peppers, diced
  • 1/2 C diced roasted poblano pepper

Combine quinoa and water in a rice cooker, or cook over the stove, according to package directions.

Mix the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl; set aside.

Heat one tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Cook the cubed tempeh for a few minutes, stirring often to brown it.

Add a bit more oil if you need it, and toss in the onion and peppers. Turn the heat up and cook, stirring often, about 5 minutes. When the veggies reach a consistency that’s cooked but still crisp, pour over the sauce. Stir to coat and let it cook down for a minute or two.

Serve cooked quinoa into bowls and top with the stir fry. Enjoy hot!

One Month, Two Challenges and Vegan Chorizo Enchilada Soup

1 Oct

Today marks the beginning of two things for me: October Unprocessed and the final month of my half marathon training. It’s serendipitous that the two should overlap: one deals with eliminating all processed food from my diet for 31 days, and the other will push me further in mileage and running dedication than I have ever before experienced.

And let me tell you something: I’m scared. Scared of giving up those products which I’ve relied on to fuel my long runs. Scared of not eating & drinking enough to replenish my body’s stores. Scared that the time it takes for me to train on a weekly basis will compete with the amount of time needed to make more of my meals and snacks from scratch, and the time of having an actual life. And overall: scared of failing myself.

I’ve been working really hard to train for my first half marathon over the past 14 weeks. I’ve stuck to my plan, put in the miles even when I didn’t want to, and foam-rolled the heck out of my legs. I’ve logged more than 200 miles in training!

And over the past couple years, I’ve implemented all that I’ve learned from October Unprocessed: new fruits and vegetables are now part of my normal diet. Ancient grains are no longer foreign to me. I read ingredient lists to ensure I consume as few chemicals and additives as possible. Recipes prompt me to alter ingredients so they’re better for me and my loved ones. And I put so much more effort into nutritional intake & value.

But I’m not one to turn down a challenge. In fact, bring it on! Here are a few of the foods I’m going to prep:

  • Pumpkin, fresh from the garden: for baked goods, coffee, risottos, stews, chili, and breakfast hashes
  • Corn, from the cob: for soups, cornbreads, omelets and casseroles
  • Dried Beans: for soups, enchiladas, dips, and egg scrambles
  • Muffins & bars: for weekday breakfasts, post-workout snacks, and late night munchies
  • Breads: using spent grain from my homebrew beer to make a protein-rich bread that’ll hold me over through my training runs
  • Veggie Frittatas: for grab-and-go dinners on busy nights
  • Soups: the ultimate fall meal, which can be a complete nutritional meal in one bowl!

And speaking of soups, here’s a great one I’ll be making again. In one pot, it captures all the Mexican goodness of enchiladas, protein-filled ingredients, and ease of a weeknight dinner. It’s also vegan and gluten free! I paired this with my jalapeno hummus biscuits for a tasty dinner.

Vegan Chorizo Enchilada Soup | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

Vegan Chorizo Enchilada Soup, adapted from Gimme Some Oven

Serves 8

  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 diced yellow onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 C masa harina (corn flour)
  • 2 C vegetable stock
  • 1 C hot water
  • 2 9-0z tubes of soy chorizo, thawed
  • 1 1/4 C homemade red enchilada sauce
  • 1 (14-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (14-ounce) can diced tomatoes, with juices
  • kernels from 2 ears of corn
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt, or more/less to taste

Heat oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Cool onion until transparent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook another 2 minutes. Add the corn flour and cook 2 more minutes, stirring frequently.

Now stir in the veggie stock, mixing well. Add the water, chorizo enchilada sauce, black beans, tomatoes, corn and spices. Let the soup come to a simmer. Reduce the heat and cook for 10 minutes.

Serve into bowls and pair with your favorite biscuits, buns, rolls, or slice of bread. Keep leftovers in the fridge, up to 5 days.

Carrot Cake Hummus

17 Sep

I’m lucky in that I have no food allergies or restrictions, aside from the self-imposed ones I follow. All throughout my life I’ve had friends who are allergic to nuts, legumes, fruits, veggies, gluten, dairy, eggs, chocolate, coffee…you name it!

One allergy must be bad enough to avoid. I can’t even fathom having multiple allergies and restrictions such that there’s more you CAN’T eat than what you CAN. Or at least that’s how it seemed.

My close friend recently had to alter her diet drastically. No dairy, soy, sugar, processed foods, chocolate, coffee, spices or gluten. Whew! That’s a lot she can’t have. I’ve been scouring my own blog and the blogs I follow for recipes that could suit her new needs. And I’m reminded of the years I’ve participated in October Unprocessed: we’re taught to reframe how we approach food and ingredients. Food has to be approached from the mindset of what we CAN have, not what we can’t.

If you can’t have items that contain gluten, all you’re going to want is gluten! And you’re going to suffer mentally as a result. Reframing your approach will allow you to think of all the fruits, vegetables, legumes, and grain-free goodies you can have.

I hope to help my friend get through her new diet. This recipe was created out of her necessity to have an easy-to-eat snack that also tastes good. And boy does it! Whether an afternoon snack, pre-workout pick me up or late night nibble, this carrot cake hummus tastes decadent but contains none of the guilt. Let the flavors develop overnight for a delicious treat!

Carrot Cake Hummus | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

Carrot Cake Hummus
Makes 2 cups of hummus dip

  • 1 can chickpeas, rinsed VERY well and drained
  • 1 C baby carrots, rinsed and dried
  • 1-2 tbsp pure honey
  • 2 tbsp shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 2 tbsp canned coconut milk
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp coconut butter
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • To serve: Graham crackers, apple slices, nilla wafers

Pulse carrots in the food processor to begin breaking them down. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend first, then puree to make it smooth. You will need to scrape down the edges of the bowl once or twice. Taste and adjust as necessary. You may need to add more milk.

Transfer to a dish and refrigerate at least one hour, but overnight is even better to let the flavors develop.

Carrot Cake Hummus | xtinaluvspink.wordpress.com

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