Chocolate Chip Cookies (that might be gluten free too!)

I LOVE a good old fashioned chocolate chip cookie. It reminds me of the standard slice and bake Nestle cookies that I had at least once a week as a kid. Good news with this recipe, making a big batch once a week is no biggie! So enjoy with no guilt!

Ingredients

1/2 cup melted butter (grass fed, if possible)

1/4 cup melted coconut oil

3/4 cup brown sugar (you can sub 1/2 cup brown sugar with coconut sugar here if you want to cut the sugar content even more)

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 large eggs

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoonsalt

3 cups almond flour (I have used the Bob Mills brand; however, if you have plain almonds on hand, you can grind in food processor to make a flour.)

1 1/4 to 1/ 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips and/or chucks

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix butter, coconut oil, and sugar with a hand or stand mixer. Add in vanilla and eggs. Using mixer, beat for another minute. Add baking soda and baking powder and mix few seconds longer. Slowly add in almond flour. Stir in chocolate chips. Spoon onto a cookie sheet and bake for 12 – 15 minutes.

New Food Rules: VEG OUT

Many people ask me, what do I need to do to be healthier? “Well… That depends… Healthy is such a relative term.” The answer is SO different for each person. Nonetheless, there is one universal piece of advice I give to absolutely everyone without fail: INCREASE your non-starchy VEGGIES DAILY.

 

Non-starchy veggies are loaded with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, fiber, and phytochemicals. They help you feel full and satisfied. They are very low in sugar, fat, and calories. Veggies enhance pretty much every body system from the circulatory to the skin.

Two distinct points to make with this (not so new) food rule. First, I did not say eat more FRUIT and veggies. I left all off the fruit apart of the usual phrase for a reason. Fruit is a very nutritious part of any diet; however, 2 servings per day is ENOUGH. Fruit is composed of vitamins, fiber, and yes sugar. More is not necessarily better with the sugary goodness.

Secondly, add more veggies of the NON-STARCHY type. Corn, peas, and potatoes are all examples of starchy vegetables. Just like with fruit, the main components of starchy vegs are vitamins, minerals, fiber, and carbohydrates (which triggers an insulin spike.) Not to say that these types of foods are bad, we just do need more than 2 – 3 servings per day of them.

More than likely, you knew the WHYS to consume veggies more often. But actually getting the goodness from the frig to your mouth is much harder. Here are 3 tips to making it work.

 

Prep Your Fridge: When prepping a quick lunch or going for a speedy snack, a head of cauliflower or whole carrots are not going to make the cut. In the moment, bringing out the cutting board and breaking down the item will just not happen. Especially when crackers or chips are much easier to grab. Instead make it your intention to cut each veg right after you purchase your stash. You will be surprised how much more appealing a strip of bell pepper or a wedge of zucchini are when they are bit sized and ready to go!

carrots and broccoli pic 2cut carrots and broccoli pic

 

Make a Tasty Dip: Let’s face it… raw veggies are not that punch of flavor that your favorite chips might be. Why not change this fact? Explore different sauces, dips, or hummus recipes that get you excited about the afternoon snack time.

carrots and broccoli pic

Here is one of my personal and recent favorites:

Ian’s GrIans Green Dressingeen Dressing

One big handful of basil | One handful of           parsley | 1 tablespoon of Dijon mustard | 2 – 3 squeezed lemons | 1 ½ cups extra virgin olive oil |     2 – 3 cloves of garlic | Salt and pepper to taste

Blend all ingredients together. Enjoy! (NOTE: For a thicker version, sub half of an avocado for ½ cup of oil. Or try MCT oil instead of olive oil.)

 

 

Blend it Up: Have an “easy-out” on hand on those days that you just cannot seem to fit it all in. There are many brands of “green powders” on the market that you can add to either a full smoothie, a vegan milk, or even just water. I encourage purchasing a few different sample packs to do a bit of taste testing. Watch out for artificial sweeteners, added sugars, and preservatives. Vega One is currently the brand in my diet routine.

Vega One Mix Pic

Let’s Supper: 9th Edition!

The holiday season brings a ton of EXTRAS to the to-do list. De-stress with a comforting, nutritious, and simple meal at home.  *Note: All recipes serve 4.

Supper 1:

Squash & Sweet Potato Soup

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Drizzle olive oil over roughly chopped butternut squash (1 – 2 pounds), 2 small sweet potatoes, and 1 yellow onion on baking sheet. Season with a tablespoon curry powder, teaspoon cinnamon, teaspoon nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Roast for 30 – 40 minutes until lightly brown and tender. Transfer veggies to deep stock pot over with 1 – 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Begin to mash veggies to release flavor. Add 2 cups of low sodium, veggie broth and 1 cartoon of culinary coconut cream. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes before blending with immersion blender or stand blender. Transfer back to stock pot and bring back to simmer. Option to add toasted and buttered, gluten free bread on side. (I prefer “Food for Life” flax and rice gluten free bread).

Supper 2:

Kale & Cabbage Salad with Rotisserie Chicken

In a large serving bowl, add shredded bunch of kale and 1 head of cabbage. Massage 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and a pinch of salt to greens for 2 minutes. Set aside to allow oil to soften greens. Combine 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 teaspoon of salt and pepper in small bowl before whisking in 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil. Add shredded rotisserie (organic if possible) chicken to greens with diced Fuji apples and crumbled goat cheese. Drizzle dressing over salad and toss to coat. Add salt and pepper for finishing.

 Supper 3:

Pork Chops with Roasted Carrots & Greens

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut 12 carrots into 1 – 2 inch slices. Toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 tablespoon raw honey, salt, and pepper. Transfer to sheet pan and roast for 20 minutes. Season pork chops with olive oil, salt, pepper, and a sprinkle of curry powder. In cast iron skillet, cook chops for 1 – 2 minutes on each side. Place 1 pat of butter on each chop before placing in oven for 5 – 10 more minutes (depends on thickness of chop and temperature preference.) At the end of pork chop and carrot cooking, sauté 2 bags/bunches of spinach in 1 – 2 tablespoons of olive oil and chopped garlic. Season spinach with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Plate pork chop, carrots, and greens as soon as spinach is wilted.

Supper 4:

Sausage and Brussel Sprouts

In a large saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon and add large diced yellow onions. Once onions are softened, add 1 package of diced chicken and apple sausage. Allow to heat through before adding 1 pound, halved Brussels sprouts. Season with salt and pepper, and stir to incorporate. Pour 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and 1 cup of chicken broth to pan. Cover and allow sprouts to steam for 8 minutes or until tender. Uncover and add 2 – 3 sliced apples to pan. Stir again to combine. Once apples are tender, the dish is ready to serve.

 

Grocery List:

Produce:

1 large sweet potato (or 2 small)

1 medium butternut squash

2 onion, yellow

1 bunch lacinato kale

1 head cabbage

1 lemon

4 Fuji apples

12 carrots

2 bunches/bag spinach

Garlic

1 bunch/1 pound Brussel sprouts

 

Protein:

1 rotisserie, store bought chicken (organic is preferable)

4 small pork chops

1 package apple chicken sausage (I like Applegate brand.)

 

Cold/Diary:

Butter (unsalted, grass-fed)

1 round goat cheese (grass fed, if available)

 

Pantry:

Extra-virgin olive oil

1 carton of culinary coconut milk

Vegetable broth, low sodium

Chicken broth, low sodium

Apple cider vinegar

Maple syrup, grade A or B

Raw honey

Dried herbs: Curry powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, red pepper flakes

 

 

Asian Spiced Chicken with Root Vegetables

Combining Asian spices with fall friendly root vegetables is a twist on the usual side dish. Trust me, this will be a go to veggie dish to pair with any meat. Chicken goes nicely here but pork would be an tasty sub.

Ingredients

4 bone-in chicken breast (organic, if possible)

1 tablespoon garlic powder

2 tablespoons yellow curry powder

2 tablespoons chili powder

2 large turnips, large dice

3 medium parsnips, large dice

6 medium carrots, large dice

10 small golden beets (or 2 large), large dice

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoons dried thyme

1 tablespoon dried rosemary

1/2 tablespoon dried sage powder

2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar

3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce (or tamari for gluten free option)

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix spices for chicken rub (garlic, curry, chili powder, plus salt and pepper to taste). Drizzle chicken breast with olive oil and rub spice mixture on each piece. Place on baking sheet and cook for 35 to 45 minutes (depending on oven).

While chicken is cooking, bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the diced turnips and parsnips to the water and cook for 2 minutes. Using large spoon, transfer the turnips and parsnips to baking sheet. Continue with carrots in boiling water for 2 minutes followed by beets for 5 minutes.

Season the vegetables with 3 tablespoons of olive oil, thyme, rosemary, and sage. In the same oven, cook the veggie mixture for 25 minutes.

Once slightly browned, remove the vegetables. In small bowl, combine white vinegar and soy sauce. Drizzle with over the vegetables and taste for any needed salt and pepper.

Fill over 1/2 of plate with veggies and a side of chicken for a great Savage Standard portioned plate!

(Note: Some bone-in chicken breast may be larger than protein need. Cutting in half is always an option! Save for lunch!)

Easy Peanut Butter Cookies

This cookie recipe is one of the easiest around. The combination of sweeteners give the recipe a bit more interest. No flour or gluten is involved.

Ingredients

1 cup organic, creamy peanut butter

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup stevia, “whole-leaf”

3 tablespoons raw honey

1 large egg, pasture raised

 

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Using 2 spoons, scoop dough and form into balls on greased baking sheet. Press fork on top of cookie to make grooves. Bake for 8 – 10 minutes.

Tomato & Asparagus Pasta Carbonara

A creamy pasta dish is one of the most comforting meals known to man. It is also heavy on the carbs, light on the vegetables, and loaded with anti-nutrients. This version of pasta carbonara is clean enough to have any night of the week. To up the vegetable count, use a veggie based pasta. OR, top with a fried egg to rich things up.

 

Ingredients

8 ounces penne pasta (red lentil pasta is my choice; however, brown rice, or whole grain are a good choice as well.)

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 pound asparagus (or baby broccoli)

1 tablespoon garlic, chopped

1 pint cherry tomatoes

1 egg (pasture-raised)

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus 1/4 cup for plating

2 tablespoons butter (grass-fed)

Fresh basil (optional)

Directions

Mix 1 large egg, ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper in small bowl. Set aside.

Cook  penne pasta (vegetable based pasta is preferred.  Try red lentil pasta by
Tolerant.)

While pasta is cooking, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 pound of asparagus or broccoli rabe to large sauté pan.  Allow to cook for 3 – 4 minutes before adding 1 tablespoon of chopped garlic and 1 pint of halved cherry tomatoes.

Add cooked pasta and egg mixture to sauté pan. Toss to coat.  Option to add more grated cheese and fresh basil.

Pumpkin Pecan Muffins

Pumpkin is an amazing ingredient not only for fancy lattes but also baked goods. Traditional baked goods are a sugar bomb. These muffins are clean, light, and low sugar. They pair PERFECTLY with a steaming cup of coffee (or Bulletproof coffee) for breakfast or served even as a pre-workout snack. Did i mention they are gluten free too!

Ingredients

1/2 cup coconut flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon allspice

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon salt

4 eggs, pastured raised

2/3 cup pumpkin puree

2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup coconut oil, melted

1/2 cup butter, melted

6 tablespoons maple syrup

1/2 cup chopped pecans

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease either 12 large muffin pan or 24 mini muffin pan with butter. Whisk dry ingredients (coconut flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, salt) together in large bowl. In second bowl, whisk wet ingredients (eggs, pumpkin puree, vanilla, coconut oil, butter, and maple syrup). Pour wet ingredients into dry and stir to combine. Divide batter in pan and top with chopped pecans. Place in oven and bake for 22 – 24 minutes.