Strawberries and Coconut Cream

After working with a dietitian, I am starting to see the benefit of the bed-time snack. As Dietitian Cassie points out, eating a bedtime snack can balance your blood sugar levels while you sleep, helping you sleep better as well as supporting your metabolism. She advocates for only eating a fat with a carbohydrate and staying away from protein before bed.

Being on this elimination diet has me pretty particular about what I can eat, but I am thrilled to say that this is so delicious! When I discovered coconut cream, I swear the clouds parted and the sun shined through.

Strawberries and Coconut Cream (Espinosa Kitchen)

Strawberries and Coconut Cream

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup Coconut Cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (try other extracts too, such as lemon!)
  • Handful of fresh strawberries, sliced (or other berries)

Directions:

  1. Mix coconut cream with vanilla extract.
  2. Top with strawberries.

NOTE: Coconut cream and coconut milk are not the same thing. I like Trader Joe’s for the minimal cost of about $1.50/$1.70 or so a can. If you don’t have a Trader Joe’s near you, you can buy Native Forest brand on Amazon; however, the cans are smaller. If neither of these are a good fit for you, you can make your own using coconut milk; this again will be less than what you get at Trader Joe’s.

Once you start eating coconut cream, you’ll begin to wonder how you lived without it!

Allergen-Free Apple Pie Smoothie

It’s no secret that I haven’t written much on my blog in several months. To be honest, I have been struggling with some health issues and have been working closely with a dietitian (Dietitian Cassie) (as well as doctors) to try and find the cause. Needless to say, I have had other priorities than posting here. However, that does not mean I don’t miss writing, posting, and interacting with every single one of you who reads my blog. There are so many new things I want to share with you that I have learned in the last few months – but that will be a post in it’s own.

Today, I want to share with you a recipe I made this morning for my breakfast smoothie. As some of you know, I started an elimination diet last week (this means no nuts, no soy, no dairy, no eggs, no gluten). At first, this diet had me antsy and squirming – nervous that I wouldn’t be able to eat anything good: forcing me to gag down every meal for nutrients rather than enjoyment.

Good news: this is not true!

This smoothie recipe is so, so good! I’m totally making it again tomorrow.

Allergen-Free Apple Pie Smoothie (Espinosa Kitchen)

Allergen-Free Apple Pie Smoothie

Ingredients:

Directions:

  1. Add enough water to cover the steel-cut oats and place in the fridge overnight.
  2. Add oats, applesauce, coconut milk, cinnamon, vanilla extract and protein powder to the blender.
  3. Blend.
  4. Top with nutmeg if desired.

Cookie Dough Greek Yogurt

I saw this recipe pinned to Pinterest recently and since I always have these ingredients in the house, I figured this would be a great snack after completing my weekly grocery shopping. I’m looking forward to prepping my snacks for the week today, doing some laundry, and adding to my blog. I already hit up the gym this morning – dancing my heart out to Sh’Bam. Carlos is out playing Broomball on the lake – he is definitely an outdoorsy winter person. I am not. I also want to point out that I use Fage Greek yogurt over Chobani because I think it is creamier. I also find Fage at least $1 cheaper at Target than at our local grocery store.

Another option with this recipe is to add a little cream cheese and use cinnamon pita chips or something similar for a dip. Also delicious. With this, I added extra chocolate chips and butterscotch chips.

Cookie Dough Greek Yogurt

Cookie Dough Greek Yogurt (www.espinosakitchen.wordpress.com)

Cookie Dough Greek Yogurt

Recipe Modified from: The Suburban Girl Gone Country

Ingredients:

  • 1 small container or 6-8 oz. from a larger container of Fage or Chobani plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 Tablespoon natural nut butter (I used almond butter, but peanut butter is also a good option.)
  • 1 teaspoon honey, pure maple syrup or agave nectar (I used honey.)
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon toasted wheat germ (I think this is my favorite part! It adds an amazing texture.)
  • 1 Tablespoon chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Mix yogurt, nut butter, honey, extract and wheat germ together. Top with chocolate chips.
  2. To spice it up, try butterscotch chips, raisins, pecans, or walnuts.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bites

I had some extra time today and decided to bake something. My younger brother, Teva, was coming over, so I thought I better finish these before he gets here for a couple reasons: 1) because he will want to eat one when he gets here, and 2)  because it uses chickpeas/garbanzo beans instead of flour. I knew that he had to try one before I told him the ingredients. He liked them of course! Just imagine the delicious taste without the worry or eating junk food. I am definitely ok with that!

 

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bites

Ingredients: Chickpeas, vanilla extract, natural peanut butter, honey, baking powder, salt and chocolate chips.

Vanilla Nut Smoothie

This is another attempted recreation of a smoothie at Ecopolitan Restaurant. It may still need a few tweaks, but it is quite delicious the way it is. Here is my recipe from my first attempt:

 

Vanilla Nut Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 2 bananas cut into pieces
  • 4 Tablespoons crushed almonds
  • 4 pitted dates, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup milk

Directions: Blend in a blender. Enjoy!