Pumpkin Pecan Pie

Okay people we're officially on countdown to turkey day, and whether you're in charge of cooking the feast or not, this healthy pumpkin pecan pie is a must!  Not only is it gluten free, dairy free and delicious, but it also contain a fraction of the calories of your regular pumpkin pecan pie!
The best part is you get your pumpkin pecan fix without sacrificing all the progress you've made the whole year by blowing it in one sitting!  I've used lots of exclamation marks, but this is exciting!  And while I'm all excited about thanksgiving let me just say how thankful I am to you for visiting my little blog :)  I love sharing my healthy recipes and hope you enjoy them too.  I'd love to hear from you if you do.

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Recent Comments
Guest — Melissa
I used a 9" pie pan. Let me know how it turns out ! Thanks
Friday, 14 November 2014 03:26
Guest — Kelli Hansen
I met you today on GTU. I did the wreath. Blendtec Kitchen Mill on Amazon is where we got our grinder. I am so thrilled to have m... Read More
Saturday, 22 November 2014 02:07
Guest — Melissa
It was so great to meet you as well! Thank you for the tip on the grinder, and let me know if you have any questions on any of the... Read More
Saturday, 22 November 2014 04:18
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Paleo Cinnamon Orange Pancakes


On most weekday mornings, breakfast at our house is a messy free for all. Yep, that's what happens most mornings. But sometimes - I single handedly (single handedly because I'm holding the baby in the other) make breakfast to a chorus of "I'm hungry! Is it ready yet?!" As I tenderly respond, "Relax! You'll get it when it's done!"

Just keeping it real.

I'm telling you how my hectic morning went to give you assurance that making a healthy breakfast, without using any prepackaged, preservative and who-knows-what-else filled mixes is possible and just as quick as the packaged stuff.  The patience part is something I'll have to get back to you about.
This will make about 6 pancakes. These guys are very filling. If you have leftovers, just put them in a baggy and freeze for later.

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Healthy {Homemade} Hot Cocoa

 


On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me...a cup of {Homemade} Hot Cocoa! I love this time of year, but I will admit that in years past I've indulged in the excessive festive goodies that always abound during the holidays. Over the years I've become more aware and informed and consequently have started making some different choices in what I feed my family. Does that mean we can't enjoy some holiday treats? No way!!

This hot cocoa is made with unrefined coconut sugar, coconut milk and cacao (cocoa) powder. As a bonus the natural coconut oil from the sugar and milk will leave your lips super soft after each sip. Which may come in handy if you find yourself under the mistletoe (wink, wink, nudge, nudge)

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Peanut Butter & Honey-Caramel Dipped Apples


I have a confession to make. I have owned a candy thermometer for close to 8 years and I've never used it...until now.  I had set out to make a gluten free, refined sugar free, dairy free peanut butter fudge. After the fourth attempt I was ready to give up. Oh don't get me wrong it tasted great, but it was just too soft to call fudge.  Then I had a moment of inspiration while cutting an apple for my daughter and Peanut Butter & Honey-Caramel Dipped Apples were born!

If you're planning on entertaining guests, need a treat for the neighbors, or just want something to satisfy your sweet tooth that won't go against your New Years resolutions -- this is it! This clean-eating caramel is made with only THREE INGREDIENTS! A candy thermometer isn't absolutely necessary, but is very helpful if you have one.

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Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies


We were getting ready to go to grandma's 90th birthday party when I realized that there probably wouldn't be any gluten free treats available there for my daugher. So I found a big ripe banana in the basket of fruit in my pantry, some dark chocolate chips in my freezer, and came up with these delicious gluten free, egg free, paleo, refined sugar free AMAZING cookies!

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Grain Free Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Squares


The leaves are changing colors in the mountains, the nights are getting cooler....it must be time for pumpkins! As October approaches there's a few things that you just can't help but notice. 1) Halloween costumes and decorations have taken over every store. (Seriously? Pretty soon they're going to start pushing Halloween right after the 4th of July!)  2) Everyone starts craving warm comfort food like bread and soup, and 3) pumpkins are finding they're way onto front porches and into our dinner and dessert dishes.

Speaking of dessert, my mom makes the best pumpkin squares. Every fall she busts out a can of pumpkin puree and whips up this yummy dessert. We already know how good pumpkin is for you with those antioxidants and vitamins found in dark orange fruits and vegetables. Since my mission in the kitchen is to create gluten free food that also has no refined sugar, and will overall be something healthy to fuel my family, I had to make a few changes to mom's original.

I wanted a similar look, feel, and taste that I love about mom's pumpkin squares, just without the flour and sugar. This grain free version is dairy free, gluten free, and Paleo. After a little time in the oven these pumpkin squares come out soft, spongy, and won't dry out easily like so many other gluten free desserts.

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Coconut Yogurt Overnight Breakfast Bowl



"What the heck is Kefir? Cultured what? Fermented vegetables? I've made homemade yogurt, but what's all this other stuff?"

Those may or may not have been my exact thoughts when I first heard about these strange terms. After some research, trial and error, and a little taste testing, this topic suddenly has my undivided attention.

Still don't know what I'm talking about?

I'm talking about bacteria. (dun dun dun!) Don't panic, these microorganisms are the good guys. For a long time western culture has had it out for bacteria in any form - antibiotics when you get the sniffles and antimicrobials in the form of hand sanitizer and cleaners. But, just like cholesterol can be divided into good (LDL) and bad (HDL), so can bacteria.

The thing is, our gut needs the good kind of bacteria, called bifidobacteria and/or lactobacilli. And chances are you've already had some cultured microorganisms...yogurt anyone? Ongoing research shows that these kinds of beneficial bacteria support a healthy digestive system, boosts the immune system, and greatly improves the health of the whole body. This is even more important for those with gastrointestinal diseases. I have first hand knowledge from before my daughter was diagnosed with celiac disease and we went gluten free that when the gut is not working properly, overall health and well-being goes down the toilet. Seriously, happy intestines make a happy and healthy person.

If you'd like to read more about healthy bacteria, here's a great article.

Ok, so what's this about kefir, cultures, and fermentation?

These are all methods for consuming (in a yummy way) the good bacteria our bodies need to enjoy optimal health. Basically, you're making your own probiotics. Fermented vegetables recipe and how-to coming soon!
Kefir is traditionally a creamy milk-based drink that has been cultured at room temperature, while yogurt is cultured at a temperature around 110 F and has a thicker consistency. Depending on whether you have a yogurt maker or not, you can make this overnight breakfast bowl with coconut kefir instead of coconut yogurt.

I cultured mine in a yogurt maker instead of at room temperature. Details, details. Call it whatever you want. It's a dairy free, superfood, that's great in this simple breakfast.

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Paleo Dinner Rolls


 
These dinner rolls are pretty simple to make, great with some drizzled honey, and fits into a grain free or paleo diet. It took a while to wrap my head around the idea that I could use ground nuts to make "breads". Now that I'm getting the hang of it, all kinds of possibilities and variety have opened up.

These dinner rolls are filling because they are packed with protein instead of refined carbohydrates. You can serve them warm from the oven or freeze them for later.

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Cherry Chocolate Energy Bites


These bite-sized balls of yum are packed full of natural protein and fiber, and will give you a kick of energy! They're grain free, gluten free, clean eating, and are easy to make, freeze or refrigerate, and have ready for whenever you need them.

I have been experimenting with energy bites for a while now. The inspiration started with my 10 year old son announcing after doing a kid's CrossFit class with his dad that he needed to eat more protein. Haha! I guess the lean and lankiness he inherited from me isn't as much appreciated for a boy.

I tried making them out of my Homemade Protein Powder and with different ingredients blended together (which turned out really yummy by the way), but I needed to make some energy bites that were completely grain free as well - in other words, no oats. This inspiration came after realizing that in order for my youngest daughter to enjoy one I had to make a oat-less batch just for her (we've found that with her possible Crohn's and/or Celiac that she feels much better without any grains at all). The inspiration for the flavor came from my husband's birthday cake he requests every year....cherry chocolate!

I guess another inspiration is that I'm running my first marathon! A bite of energy to get me started will definitely come in handy on race day.

Anyway, regardless of where or how these bad boys came about, now they can be enjoyed by everyone!

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{Homemade} Walnut Cocoa Butter


 
I made the mistake of buying nutella recently. Mistake, you ask? Oh, don't worry it's gluten free, that's not the problem. The problem is when I come into the kitchen to find my kids with spoonfuls of nutella that they're licking clean, with more of it all over their faces, suggesting this isn't their first spoonful. And no, they won't admit how many spoonfuls they've snuck in the last 20 minutes while I was putting the baby down for a nap. They "forgot".

I really can't get too mad at them since I may have been caught doing the same thing just the other day! There are worse things than nutella covered faces, but if they - and by they I mean WE - are going to eat cocoa flavored nut butters by the spoonful it might as well be without tons of sugar, emulsifiers, and artificial flavors. So I made us some {homemade} walnut cocoa butter!

I chose walnuts because that's what I had, but I'm sure it could work with most other nuts: cashew, hazelnut, almond, etc. All you need is a good heavy duty blender or food processor. You could also use already made nut butters like almond butter and just whip it together with the remaining ingredients. There are some health food grocery stores where you can grind your own fresh nut butter. Otherwise, use  organic walnuts and enjoy a gluten free, dairy free, refined sugar free, all-natural, healthy treat! If you want some more how-to advice on making nut butter here's a great post from Beth at Tasty Yummies.

P.S. It's so yummy spread on top of my Paleo Chocolate Chip cookies. I was fresh out of chocolate chips so I just replaced the coconut flour with the walnut cocoa butter for a Paleo chocolate cookie! And then topped it with a little more...just for good measure.

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Gluten Free Quick Rolls

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Melissa Moore has spent years researching and implementing nutritionally-based approaches to health and wellness. Her lifelong love of food and health evolved from a hobby to a passion when her daughter was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disease.

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