Healthy Energy Balls that everyone love: Cookie dough Energy balls

Healthy Energy Balls that everyone love: Cookie dough Energy balls

I love healthy, nourishing and delicious food! My friend Sarah came over with these cookie dough balls, and my kids and I just loved it. The recipe came from the cookbook Oh She Glows! It’s a vegan recipe to glow from the inside out. I asked her for the recipe, and since then have been improvising with it for improvement. The original recipe called for almond flour. At first, I was simply grounding almonds into the food processor to make almond flour. Then I tried using sunflower seeds, as they are cheaper than almonds. I realized I could have soaked the sunflower seeds and sprouted them to increase the nutritional value.

Why is it a good idea to soak seeds?

To remove nutritional enzyme inhibitors (phytic acid, polyphenols, tannins, nitrogens, etc.) and toxic substances that can be minimized or eliminated by soaking. “Untreated phytic acid can combine with calcium, magnesium, copper, iron and especially zinc in the intestinal tract and block their absorption. This is why a diet high in unfermented whole grains may lead to serious mineral deficiencies and bone loss. The modern misguided practice of consuming large amounts of unprocessed bran often improves colon transit time at first, but may lead to irritable bowel syndrome and, in the long term, many other adverse effects.” http://www.foodmatters.com/article/the-benefits-of-soaking-nuts-and-seeds

Why Soak Nuts, Grains, And Seeds?

  • To remove or reduce phytic acid.
  • To remove or reduce tannins.
  • To neutralize the enzyme inhibitors.
  • To encourage the production of beneficial enzymes.
  • To increase the amounts of vitamins, especially B vitamins.
  • To break down gluten and make digestion easier.
  • To make the proteins more readily available for absorption.
  • To prevent mineral deficiencies and bone loss.
  • To help neutralize toxins in the colon and keep the colon clean.
  • To prevent many health diseases and conditions.

The recipe also includes maple sugar and/or any other sweetener. I have been trying the recipe with dates instead, and even though my kids say they hate dates, they love these balls. I usually sneak them into the food processor without them seeing.

You know the best part about these balls? They are super easy to make! You add everything into the food processor, roll them into balls, and put them into the freezer until they harden.

  • 1 cup 1/2 rolled oat
  • 5-6 dates
  • 1/2 cup of soaked and starting to sprout sunflower seeds
  • A fews drops of stevia
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons of peanut, almond, or any of your favorite seed/nut butter
  • 1/4 cup of mini chocolate chip
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon of sea salt

 

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Energy balls - nutrition - Nanaimo - Nutrition Nanaimo - holistic Nutrition - weight loss - healthy food - snack kids - sprouted seed - gluten free - sugar free
No cook peanut butter cake, healthy and almost raw!

No cook peanut butter cake, healthy and almost raw!

No-Bake Peanut Butter Cake, Healthy And Almost Raw!

I love raw peanut butter cake, peanut butter, chocolate and banana. The recipe below is my favourite combination! I also love potlucks because you get to sample lots of different food, and often find new recipes to try. I first tried this cake at a potluck at Pacific Gardens Co-Housing. I asked for the recipe, did a few tweaks, and here is the recipe for you to enjoy!

If you use peanut butter make sure you use 100% peanut butter. Which means that the only ingredient is peanuts. Even better, use organic! I mention almost raw because peanut butter is not raw. Writing this post I discovered that peanut butter is a highly processed food. To make peanut butter, the nuts are harvested, de-shelled, roasted, skinned, sorted, and then pulverized into a paste. Often they are mixed with extra oil, salt and sugar. A food that has gone through this much activity after harvest is no longer considered “living” or raw. It might be a good idea to replace the peanut butter with any of your favorite nut butter, such as almond butter.

Crust (base layer): Put everything in the food processor:

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup or unpasteurized honey
  • 1 cup raw almond
  • 1/4 cup almond milk

Once everything is well processed, put the mixture into a cake pan, and firmly press it down evenly into the pan. You can use your hands to do this.

Filling (middle layer): Put everything in the food processor:

  • 2 cups organic smooth peanut butter
  • 3 large ripe bananas
  • 2 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup or unpasteurized honey
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

Once everything is fully processed, put the mixture into a cake pan, and press down evenly with a spatula.

Topping (top layer):

  • 1 cup of dark chocolate
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil

Melt the chocolate with the coconut oil in a pan, and pour on top of the filling.

Freeze the pie for 4 to 6 hours. Once it is ready to eat, bring it out of the freezer to thaw for at least 15 minutes (as it is easier to slice). Make sure to freeze the leftovers again.

Recipe adapted from here.

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Healthy Zucchini Lasagna Recipe by Carolyn Hancox-Barr

Healthy Zucchini Lasagna Recipe by Carolyn Hancox-Barr

Zucchini Lasagna-Mexican Style

I’ve asked Carolyn Hancox the owner of Northridge Fitness centre to write a post for my blog. I am so happy she decided to write a recipe using zucchini. We also have a big garden and have so many zucchini. I even tried the recipe and I loved it. Enjoy and big thanks to Carolyn!

 

This year my vegetable garden has produced more zucchini than ever. if you have ever planted zucchini, you know the plants do really well on the West Coast and if you don’t pick them fast enough they “explode” overnight and become dinosaur size. Quick, I thought, I’d better start concocting some more zucchini recipes to use this summer. Here’s one I know you will enjoy! For meat lovers I have include lean beef but you could also use turkey or lean ground chicken. My personal favourite for easy digestion is the plant based tofu scrambled up.

Ingredients:  

  • 1 lb extra lean beef or tofu substitute (scrambled not cubed)
  • 3 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp olive oil
  • Montreal steak spice and pepper (1/4 tsp. each)
  • 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can sliced mushrooms
  • 1 18 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 18oz can kidney beans, drained
  • ½   oz can jalapeno peppers, sliced
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
  • 3 medium zucchini, sliced 1/8″ thick
  • 15 oz Goat Feta, crumpled or part-skim ricotta
  • 8 oz part-skim mozzarella cheese or old style cheddar, shredded
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1 large egg

Method

In a Dutch oven, brown meat and season with salt. When cooked drain in colander to remove any fat.  Sauté garlic and onions in same pan until onion is caramelized. minutes. Return the meat to the pan, add tomatoes, tomato sauce, drained mushrooms, drained chili beans, jalapeno, peppers , fresh basil, Montreal steak spice and pepper. Simmer on low for at least 30-40minutes, covered.

Meanwhile, slice zucchinis into 1/8″ thick slices (you can try a knife but a Mandolin makes it easier and safer)
.
Preheat oven to 350°.

In a medium bowl mix either goat feta or ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese and egg. Stir well. 

In a 9×12 casserole spread some sauce on the bottom and layer the zucchini to cover. Then place some of the ricotta cheese mixture, then top with the mozzarella cheese and repeat the process until all your ingredients are used up. Top with sauce , mozzarella, Parmesan cheese and cover with foil.

Cook for 45 minutes then remove foil for an additional 15 minutes or until cheese is bubbly.

Thanks to Carolyn Hancox-Barr

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Healthy Raw Nanaimo Bar from Nanaimo

Healthy Raw Nanaimo Bar from Nanaimo

I’ve always add a sweet tooth! When I was a kid I used to bake brownies, cookies and always had dessert after diner. Now I know that sugar can really affect your body and health. Did you know that one tablespoon of sugar can lower your immune system for 24 hours? I’ve became a big fan of raw dessert, because they are healthy and so simple to make. Last weekend I made this Raw Nanaimo bar and it was soooo good. I tweeked the original recipe and I am really happy with the result. So skip the refined sugar and use honey. There are so many medicinal properties to honey. I’ve also used stevia, which is a natural sweetener that doesn’t affect your blood sugar. I used to not like the taste of it but now I use less honey and add stevia and I can’t even taste it anymore. Let me know how you like this recipe. Enjoy!

 Will make 12-16 Raw Nanaimo Bars

Nanaimo Bars Base Layer: Chocolate Crust Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Slivered Almonds
  • 1/2 Cup Soaked Dates
  • 1/2 Cup Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
  • 1/4 Cup Cocoa Powder
  • Dash of Salt

Nanaimo Bars Middle Layer: Cream Ingredients

  • 1/4 Cup Coconut Oil
  • 1/2 Cup Soaked Cashews
  • 3 Tbsp Raw unpasteurized Honey
  • A few drops of stevia
  • 1/4 Cup Coconut Milk
  • 1/2 Tsp Vanilla Extract

Nanaimo Bars Top Layer: Chocolate Topping Ingredients

  • 1/2 Cup Soaked Cashews
  • 1/2 Cup Cocoa Powder
  • 1/2 Cup Coconut Oil
  • 1/4 Cup Raw unpasteurized Honey
  • A fews drops of stevia

Directions:

  1. Place all base layer ingredients into the food processor and blend until dough like. Make sure to stop the food processor to scrape down the sides and process more.
  2. Place this dough into the 8 X 8 baking pan and press down firmly
  3. Place all middle layer ingredients into the food processor and blend until smooth. Make sure to stop the food processor to scrape down the sides and process more.
  4. Add this onto the base layer in the 8 X 8 baking pan and spread evenly.
  5. Place all the top layer ingredients into the food processor and blend until smooth. Make sure to stop the food processor to scrape down the sides and process more.
  6. Add this final layer on the middle layer and spread evenly.
  7. Place into the freezer for 1-3 hours.
  8. Remove from the freezer, cut and serve.
  9. *Tip – Store Raw Nanaimo Bars in the freezer.
Raw Nanaimo bars - healthy desert- raw cake - Nanaimo