Raw Stone Fruit Pudding

This recipe is too easy and tasty not to share! Peel the fruit for creamier texture, but it's just as tasty with the skin on!

Ingredients:

Flesh from one ripe avocado 1 large, or 2 medium (ripe!) peaches, pit(s) removed 2 ripe apricots, pits removed 2 tablespoons coconut milk 1 teaspoon lemon juice *8 drops liquid stevia or 1 soaked date if you want sweeter pudding *Splash coconut water for thinner consistency (optional)

Method:

Place all ingredients, but 1/2 of your apricot (sliced), into a food processor/blender, and blend until smooth and creamy.

Pour into your serving dish and adorn with your reserved apricot slices.

Allow to chill for at least 15 minutes (or if you're super hungry, eat immediately!) Serve and enjoy!

Raw Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bites

May you enjoy the sweetness of this life! Here's a quick and easy recipe to fulfill your sweet tooth.

Ingredients:

1 1/3 cup  cashews (raw or roasted and salted) 2/3 cup gluten free oats 1/3 cup shredded coconut 3-4 tablespoons maple syrup 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 2 tablespoons almond butter 1/2 cup chocolate or carob chips Hefty pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg *Optional: add a splash of almond milk if your dough isn't sticking together well. JUST A SPLASH! *Optional: mini-pinch sea salt if you're not using roasted salted cashews

Method:

Blend the cashews, oats, and coconut in a food processor until you've created a fine-ish powder.

Add the syrup, vanilla extract, and almond butter and blend again until it sticks together to form a dough. Add the splash of almond milk if it doesn't turn dough-y.

Add the chocolate chips and pulse briefly or mix in by hand.

Roll the dough into little balls and put them on a parchment lined cookie sheet, or in a pyrex food container. Allow to chill in the fridge for at least 3o minutes. Serve and enjoy!

5-Taste Delicata Squash Rings

Sweet, tart, salty, spicy, and astringent! Allow all the flavors to tantalize your taste buds. This makes an excellent side dish.

Ingredients:

2 medium delicata squashes, scrubbed, cut into 1"-thick wedges or rings, seeded 7 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil, divided 1 1/2 tsp. powdered cumin seed, divided Sea salt, freshly ground pepper 2 tbs. fresh lime juice 1-2 drops doTERRA lemon essential oil 1-2 tbs. tahini (sesame seed paste) 1 little pinch powdered Chimayao chile powder or crushed red pepper flakes 1 tbs. fresh chopped mint (you could also use basil or another fresh herb of your choice, but mint is yummy!)

Method:

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Place squash on a rimmed baking sheet.

Toss the squash with 4 tbs. of olive oil and the cumin, then season the squash with salt and pepper. Toss until well-combined and roast for 25-30 minutes (time may vary depending on squash).

Meanwhile, whisk lime juice, essential oil, tahini, chile, and remaining olive oil in a small bowl to blend. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Transfer squash to a platter. Gently toss the squash in the tahini mixture and sprinkle with the freshly chopped mint. Serve and enjoy!

Jazzed Up Rice Pudding

This rice pudding recipe uses other types of dried fruit and nuts for an even tastier take on the comfort food classic.

Ingredients:

1/4 chopped dried fruit: figs, dates, prunes, apricots, raisins, etc. 1/4 cup chopped pecans 1 1/2 cups cooked brown rice 1 1/2 cups whole raw milk (you can use coconut milk if you're not into dairy) 3 eggs 1/4 cup maple syrup (or less if you're like me and think that every dessert is over sweetened) 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice Pinch nutmeg Pinch sea salt Ghee for greasing the pan

Method:

Preheat the oven to 375° F.

Grease an 8X8 pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk together all the ingredients and pour into the pan.

Bake, uncovered, at 375° for 40-50 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool. (If you can wait that long!)

Pour milk over each serving if desired. Refrigerate leftovers.

Jazzed Up Rice Pudding

Benefits:

It's delicious soul food...Need I say more? If so, see below:

Brown Rice: When properly prepared, brown rice is an excellent source of manganese, and provides a good amount of selenium, phosphorus, copper, magnesium, and niacin (vitamin B3) in the diet. It's also super high in fiber (which in combo with selenium packs a one-two punch for colon health). See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Organic Eggs: (Preferably pasture-fed) Eggs are a good source of low-cost high-quality protein. They provide over 6 grams of protein (13% of the daily value for protein) each, and are a good source of choline, a key component of many fat-containing structures in cell membranes, which is particularly important for brain function and health. Eggs are also a rich source of tryptophan and selenium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Local Raw Milk: This is a VERY touchy subject. So I will leave it to the professionals. See here if you’re interested in learning more about raw milk. Otherwise, good organic milk is a fine alternative.

Pecans: Pecans contain a plethora of vitamins and minerals including vitamin A, vitamin E, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, a variety of B vitamins and zinc. One ounce of pecans provides 10 percent of the recommended Daily Value for fiber. Pecans are also a source of monounsaturated or "good" fat and protein. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

 

Summer Melon and Avocado Pudding

This pudding is cool, creamy, and utterly refreshing.

Ingredients:

1 avocado, just the flesh 2 cups ripe de-rinded melon (honeydew or Santa Claus melons are nice because their pale green flesh lends to the delicate hue of the pudding) 1/4 cup coconut milk 1 tsp. lemon juice Teeny pinch salt *Optional: honey to taste if you like it even sweeter

Method:

Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth and creamy.

You might need to stop the blender and stir the ingredients with a spatula a couple times just to ensure even blending.

Place in a container and allow to chill in the fridge for at least 20 minutes (if you can wait that long!)

Serve and enjoy!

*Optional: Serve with a little wedge of lemon...squeeze a few drops of lemon juice over your bowl and enjoy!

Benefits:

Avocado: Avocado is an excellent source of healthy fats, fiber, folate, vitamins K, C, and B, and potassium. It also contains a wide spectrum of inflammation-fighting nutrients. Avocado also helps increase our intake of two key carotenoid antioxidants—lycopene and beta-carotene—when eaten with romaine lettuce, spinach, and carrots. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cantaloupe/Honeydew: This melon is a plentiful source of vitamins A and C, as well as potassium. It is a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory fruit, which means it can help us to fight off unwanted inflammation and oxidative stress in the body. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Coconut: Coconut is highly nutritious, rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Both modern and traditional medicine have recognized coconut as having antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal properties. Meanwhile coconut provides a nutritional source of quick energy, and can be used to enhance endurance and physical performance. Coconut is also soothing to the digestive tract, and aids in absorption of other nutrients within the body. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Lemon: Lemons are vitamin C powerhouses. Great for immunity, vitamin C can also be helpful for preventing the development and progression of atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

 

Ginger Peach Smoothie

Hot enough for ya? Cool off with this tasty ginger peach smoothie.

Ingredients:

1 frozen peach, chopped with VERY SHARP KNIFE into 1/8ths 1 cup homemade almond milk 1 inch fresh ginger, peeled, 1 large handful blanched spinach (or raw if you're into that sort of thing) 1 scoop vanilla protein powder (or a handful of soaked almonds or cashews) 1/2 drop doterra ginger oil

Method:

Put all ingredients into blender and blend to smithereens.

*Note: 1 whole drop of essential oil might be too much for the sensitive palate, so dip a clean toothpick in the ginger oil, and stir it into the other ingredients before blending.

Benefits:

Almonds: Almonds are a Supernut. High in monounsaturated fats (associated with reduced risk of heart disease), almonds contain high amounts of vitamin E, magnesium, and potassium. They are also high in protein, which makes them an ideal snack. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Ginger: Ginger is very effective in alleviating symptoms of gastrointestinal distress such as gas, bloating, motion sickness, and morning sickness. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Ginger Essential Oil: Ginger is a powerful analgesic, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-nauseant, and stumulant. It provides tremendous benefits to the digestive system, and can also be used as an expectorant and decongestant. Ginger can also help provide relief from coughs and sore throats. See here to learn more about doTERRA essential oils.

Peach: Peaches are high in a number of nutrients such as niacin, thiamine, potassium, and calcium. They are also high in beta carotene, an antioxidant that converts to Vitamin A (which is essential for healthy hearts and eyes). Some say the darker the peach’s color, the richer it is in Vitamin A. The antioxidants may also help in maintaining healthy urinary and digestive functions. Eastern cultures consider peach tea as a powerful kidney cleanser and is used in detoxification. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Spinach: Spinach is a rich source of vitamin K (think blood builder/purifier!), vitamins A, C, B2 and B6, as well as manganese, folate, magnesium, iron, calcium, and potassium. Popeye apparently knew how to protect himself against inflammatory problems and oxidative stress-related issues, while promoting his cardiovascular and bone health. AND he got the girl! See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Minty Fruit Salad

This fruit salad is minty fresh.

Ingredients:

1-2 kiwis, peeled and sliced into coins 1/4 small cantaloupe, de-seeded, de-rinded, and cut into 1" hunks 1 cup strawberries, de-stemmed and sliced 1 grapefruit, peeled, and sectioned (then peel each section so that all that remains is the glistening flesh) 4 mint leaves, minced Juice from 1/4 lemon 1 drop doTERRA lemon oil

Method:

Gently toss all ingredients together until fruit is coated with lemon and mintiness.

Serve and enjoy.

Double or triple the recipe if you have more than 1-2 hungry hippos partaking of your masterpiece fruit salad, and feel free to get creative with what fruits you add.

Benefits:

Cantaloupe: This melon is a plentiful source of vitamins A and C, as well as potassium. It is a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory fruit, which means it can help us to fight off unwanted inflammation and oxidative stress in the body. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Grapefruit: This citrus fruit is packed with Vitamins C and A. The pink varieties are an excellent source of the phytonutrient, lycopene, which has been touted for its ability to battle cancer-causing free radicals. Grapefruits also contain phytonutrients called "limonoids" which help inhibit tumor formation and growth. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Kiwi: This little antioxidant-packed gem abounds with vitamins C, K, and E. It's also a great source of copper and dietary fiber. A very tasty way to support your heart, lungs, and colon! See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Lemon: Lemons are vitamin C powerhouses. Great for immunity, vitamin C can also be helpful for preventing the development and progression of atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Lemon Essential Oil: Lemon oil has many properties including anticancer, antidepressant, antifungal, antiviral, antiseptic, and antioxidant. It is refreshing and invigorating, had can be used to help lower blood pressure, improve memory, ease sore throats and anxiety, help dissolve cellulite, boost energy, calm digestive problems, cleanse the lymphatic system cleansing, and promote a sense of well-being. It is also miraculous for removing grease, gum, oil, and unwanted marks and spots. See here to learn more about doTERRA essential oils.

Peppermint: Peppermint is a good source of vitamins C and A, as well as manganese and copper. It is also great for the digestion and has antimicrobial properties. See here for more health benefits.

Coconut Bliss Bars

Coconut bliss bars are the yummiest snack EVER. They can also double as dessert.

This recipe was inspired by Stephanie Eusebi Nutrition & Wellness.

Looking to make a nice dessert or energy boosting snack? This recipe is super simple and delicious. Feel free to add other types of nuts or dried fruit to appeal to any palate. I added pepitas (hulled pumpkin seeds) to this batch and it was delish!

Ingredients:

2 cups shredded or flaked coconut
1/2-3/4 cup dark chocolate or carob chips (preferably a brand with no refined sugar)
1 egg
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
1 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
teeny pinch cinnamon
teeny pinch nutmeg
1 pinch sea salt
*Optional: If you like them a little sweeter, feel free to add a few tablespoons of maplesyrup to the mix

Method:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Line an 8×8 baking pan with parchment paper.

Whisk the eggs.

Whisk the melted coconut oil into the egg mixture.

Add in the vanilla, coconut, and chocolate chips (and optional maple syrup) and combine until well-mixed.

Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes or until the top and edges are golden and crispy.

Allow to cool (if you have the willpower!). Slice off a piece and enjoy!

Benefits:

Cacao: (Dark chocolate)Organic cacao is a legit superfood. It abounds with Vitamin A, C, and E, and a plethora of B vitamins, as well as, magnesium, copper, calcium, manganese, zinc, sulphur, iron, chromium, phosphorus, and Omega 6 fatty acids. It is also high in protein and fiber. Move over spinach! See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Coconut: Coconut is highly nutritious, rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Both modern and traditional medicine have recognized coconut as having antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal properties. Meanwhile coconut provides a nutritional source of quick energy, and can be used to enhance endurance and physical performance. Coconut is also soothing to the digestive tract, and aids in absorption of other nutrients within the body. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Organic Eggs: (Preferably pasture-fed) Eggs are a good source of low-cost high-quality protein. They provide over 6 grams of protein (13% of the daily value for protein) each, and are a good source of choline, a key component of many fat-containing structures in cell membranes, which is particularly important for brain function and health. Eggs are also a rich source of tryptophan and selenium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Action Packed Trail Mix

Spring has sprung! Time to hit the trail (mix)! My über adorable nephew was just here visiting, and I needed to come up with some energy-boosting snacks, stat. When you only have 2 minutes before heading off on an adventure (in our case we went snowshoeing in the high country...had to enjoy the last of the snow!), then this is a perfect treat.

I always have some dried fruit, and crispy (soaked and dehydrated) nuts and seeds on hand, just in case. This time we also added some raw cacao nibs and a few crack almonds chocolate covered almonds to make our mix chocolatey and delicious. Hope you enjoy this special snack and whatever kinds of adventures you can dream up!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup crispy almonds 1/4 cup crispy pecans 1/4 cup golden raisins Hefty sprinkle tart dried cherries Hefty sprinkle cacao nibs Chocolate covered almonds to taste

Method:

Mix all the ingredients and place in a container that can withstand your adventure (I don't recommend glass if you're going hiking, biking, running, etc....But I really hate plastic). Try a wax paper bag if you think it won't get destroyed. Grab a handful as needed and enjoy!

Benefits:

Almonds: Almonds are a Supernut. High in monounsaturated fats (associated with reduced risk of heart disease), almonds contain high amounts of vitamin E, magnesium, and potassium. They are also high in protein, which makes them an ideal snack. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Cacao: Organic cacao is a legit superfood. It abounds with Vitamin A, C, and E, and a plethora of B vitamins, as well as, magnesium, copper, calcium, manganese, zinc, sulphur, iron, chromium, phosphorus, and Omega 6 fatty acids. It is also high in protein and fiber. Move over spinach! See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Pecans: Pecans contain a plethora of vitamins and minerals including vitamin A, vitamin E, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, a variety of B vitamins and zinc. One ounce of pecans provides 10 percent of the recommended Daily Value for fiber. Pecans are also a source of monounsaturated or "good" fat and protein. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Raisin: Raisins are high in fiber witch can aid in relief of constipation. They a good source of iron (thus helping with anemia), arganine (which can enhance libido and aid with sexual weakness). They also contain calcium and boron, both of which are crucial for proper bone health. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Digestion Fixer Elixir

Got gut woes? This green juice will fix you right up. Anytime you have tummy trouble, this juice can help you get back on track. This delightful combo of ingredients help to promote healthy digestion, soothe inflammation, calm nausea, and get you back to feeling good. It's a pretty mild juice with a touch of sweet from the pear and little kick of spice with doTERRA's ginger essential oil (or a little hunk of fresh ginger). Happy belly to you!

A dab will do you on the ginger oil and the aloe juice! Both are powerful medicine.

Ingredients:

1 cucumber, peeled and quartered 4 celery sticks, de-stringed 1 pear, quartered and cored 1/2 lemon, de-rinded 1 splash fresh aloe juice (I like Lakewood Organic) 1 drop doTERRA ginger essential oil

Method:

Place all ingredients but aloe juice and essential oil in your juicer. Juice. Place in a glass jar (with a lid) add your aloe and essential oil. Shake it up to mix it all together. Sip to your heart’s content!

Or, place all ingredients in your high-powered juicer. Add 1 cup filtered water. Blend to smithereens. Strain over a glass. Enjoy!

Benefits:

Aloe Juice: The aloe vera plant abounds with vitamins, minerals, proteins, polysaccharides, enzymes, and amino acids. It is particularly helpful to aid with digestive ailments (constipation, gas, bloating), inflammation (internal and external). Research also shows that aloe vera juice can help deter cancer (particularly colon cancer), stroke and heart attack. See here for more health benefits.

Celery: Celery is jam-packed with vitamins K and C, beta-carotene, and manganese. But also contains phytonutrients that are shown to have anti-inflammatory benefits and protect the digestive tract. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cucumber: Cucumbers contain three types of phytonutrients which provide with valuable antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer benefits. They are also very low in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium and are a good source of Vitamin A, C, and K, pantothenic acid, magnesium, phosphorus and manganese. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Ginger Essential Oil: Ginger is a powerful analgesic, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-nauseant, and stumulant. It provides tremendous benefits to the digestive system, and can also be used as an expectorant and decongestant. Ginger can also help provide relief from coughs and sore throats. See here to learn more about doTERRA essential oils.

Lemon: Lemons are vitamin C powerhouses. Great for immunity, vitamin C can also be helpful for preventing the development and progression of atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Pear: This lovely-shaped fruit abounds with copper, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, and other cancer fighting phytonutrients. They are also extremely high in fiber and are considered to be easily digestible, so cane be great for gut health. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

*NOTE: Not all essential oils are created equal. I only use doTERRA because their oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, which is suitable for internal, external, and aromatherapeutic consumption.

*NOTE: All doTERRA Essential Oils are extremely potent. I’d recommend 1 drop per batch. Otherwise, just know that you will have a VERY strong-tasting snack!

Click here to learn more about doTERRA Essential Oils.

Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies...Nom nom

Ok seriously, these cookies have like 5 indgredients, all of which are nutritious and delicious. Next time you get a sweet tooth, I hope you give these a try!

This recipe was inspired by Taylor Made it Paleo.

I've had an insatiable sweet tooth of late, and don't like to load up on refined sugars. So I found this delightful paleo chocolate chip cookie recipe and thought I'd give it a go. Much to my pleasant surprise, these cookies are simple to make and delicious indeed. They're like little, glossy, fluffy, chocolate chippy bites of heaven. You'll see what I mean about "glossy." They've got a little sheen like they've been painted with lacquer. May you enjoy!

Ingredients:

1 cup chunky nut or seed butter (I used almond butter and it was divine.) 1/3 cup maple syrup 1 egg 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste 1/2 cup chopped pecans (or walnuts) 1/2-3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (preferably no refined sugar added)

Method:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Mix all ingredients thoroughly.

Using a large spoon, scoop the cookie dough into little balls and place them onto a parchment paper lined cookie sheet (leave ample space between each as they expand).

Bake for 12-15 minutes.

Allow to cool, and enjoy!

Benefits:

In moderation, chocolate chip cookies can be good for the soul.

Metabolism Booster Tea

Melt away the sludge in your gut with this spicy, sweet, tart brew!

This recipe was inspired by Joyful Belly Ayurveda.

According to Ayurveda, yoga's sister science which works with Nature to balance our bodily systems, lemon, honey, vinegar, and cayenne combine to create fat busting, digestion and metabolism boosting elixir.

Vinegar and lemon encourage bile from the liver and gall bladder into the gut. Bile helps the body to digest high-fat foods, which would otherwise linger in the digestive system making us feel akin to beached whales.

After spells of eating super rich and fatty foods (like the holidays, for example), it's great to give your belly a rest and break up any sludge in your digestive system. This combination of vinegar, lemon juice, honey, chili powder, doTERRA grapefruit oil, and water combines to help kick start your metabolism while cleansing your blood and lymphatic system.

Drink this special brew upon waking, a half an hour before meals, or sip slowly after meals. Enjoy it up to a few times a day between meals until you feel your pipes are sufficiently cleansed. Happy digesting!

Ingredients:

1/8 Teaspoon apple cider vinegar

Pinch cayenne pepper

Juice of half a lemon

1 drop doTERRA grapefruit essential oil

1 Cup purified water

Method:

Heat the water until hot but not boiling.

Put the remaining ingredients into a mug and mix them together.

Add the hot water and stir until well-combined. Sip and enjoy the new sense of freedom in your digestive system. :)

Benefits:

Chile: Ah, the beloved chile. A sacred plant where I come from (New Mexico), this pungent pepper has a myriad of health benefits. The phytonutrients found in chile can fight inflammation, clear congestion, boost your metabolism and immunity, while balancing your blood sugar. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Grapefruit Essential Oil: This citrus oil boosts digestion and helps to clear the lymphatic system, while flushing the body of excess fluids. It is also beneficial for treating aging or loose skin. It is mood balancing and uplifting to the mind, and may help to relieve anxiety. See here to learn more about doTERRA essential oils.

Honey: Often called "Nature's sweetener," local, raw, honey is a great way to add sweetness to your life. Raw honey is packed with vitamins and minerals and offers anti-bacterial and and anti-viral properties. But according to the Ayurvedic tradition, don't cook honey. Adding significant heat to honey both strips it of its vitamins, minerals, and enzymes while creating cellular toxicity. So add it to your cool dishes, or to warmer dishes AFTER they have finished cooking. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Lemon: Lemons are vitamin C powerhouses. Great for immunity, vitamin C can also be helpful for preventing the development and progression of atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

*NOTE: Not all essential oils are created equal. I only use doTERRA because their oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, which is suitable for internal, external, and aromatherapeutic consumption.

*NOTE: All doTERRA Essential Oils are extremely potent. I’d recommend 1 drop per batch. Otherwise, just know that you will have a VERY strong-tasting snack!

Click here to learn more about doTERRA Essential Oils.

Black Bean and Squash Chile

Have a Halloween party coming up? Use pumpkin in this recipe for a festive holiday meal. Whoever invented the "slow cooker" is my new best pal. Who knew that it was so easy to cook beautiful, homemade meals with very little preparation? I recently discovered the crockpot that had been hiding at the back of our kitchen cupboard. Could it really be so simple as tossing a whole mess of ingredients in the crockpot, turn it on, come back a few hours later to a beautiful dinner? Pretty much.

On days when you don't have a lot of time to cook, let a slow cooker do the work for you. When you ladle yourself a bowl of hot, yummy goodness, you might wonder why it has taken you so long to clear the cobwebs off this handy kitchen tool. Bon appétit!

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons coconut oil 1 medium onion, chopped 1 medium sweet yellow pepper, chopped 1 garlic clove, minced 2-3 cups cooked black beans, rinsed and drained 1-2 cups cooked winter squash, cubed (pumpkin is orange and delicious, but kabocha or butternut would be yummy too!) 3 stewed, or really ripe, tomatoes, chopped 1-2 cups veggie or chicken broth 2 teaspoons chili powder (Chimayo chile from New Mexico is best in my opinion) 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin 1-1/2 teaspoons dried oregano 1/2 teaspoon salt *Optional: cubed avocado, thinly sliced green onions, chopped cilantro *Optional: 1 cup ground or cubed turkey, ground buffalo, or chorizo *Optional 2 drops doTERRA oregano essential oil

Method:

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat.

Add onion and pepper, and cook and stir until tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer.

Transfer to a 5-qt. slow cooker; stir in the remaining ingredients, except for the essential oil.

Cook, covered, on low 4-5 hours.

If desired, add 1-2 drops doTERRA oregano essential oil to the whole batch before serving.

Garnish with avocado, cilantro, and/or green onions.

Benefits:

Black Beans: These magical legumes are touted for their abundant protein and fiber content, but are also packed with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory phytonutrients such as folate, tryptophan, and manganese. Great for gut, heart, and overall health. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Bell Peppers: NOTE! Bell peppers, a member of the nightshade family, are not for everyone. They are on the "dirty dozen" list of pesticide laden produce (when not organic), and have been known to cause inflammation in some people. HOWEVER, they have lots of health benefits too: Sweet bell peppers are high in vitamins C and A, and contain other antioxidants. Don't cook over high heat or they loose some of their nutritional wallop. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cilantro: Cilantro is a powerful cleansing agent which helps remove heavy metals and other toxins from the body. It's also beneficial for the digestive tract due to its production of digestive enzymes, acids, and juices. Its essential oils stimulate peristalsis, relieve gas, and aid with digestion. Cilantro also has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties, and helps to increase HDL cholesterol (the good kind), and reduces LDL cholesterol (the bad kind. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Oregano Essential Oil: Oregano is a powerful antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-parasitic oil. It battles common intestinal, skin and lung infections, while fending off colds and flu. It is also a general nerve tonic. Be BEWARE! A dab will do ya. See here to learn more about doTERRA essential oils.

Pumpkin: This tasty winter squash is packed vitamins A and C, magnesium and potassium, as well as dietary fiber. It’s also contains high amounts of carotenoids, the little nutrients which help to neutralize free-radicals within the body, and is low in calories. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

*NOTE: Not all essential oils are created equal. I only use doTERRA because their oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, which is suitable for internal, external, and aromatherapeutic consumption.

*NOTE: All doTERRA Essential Oils are extremely potent. I’d recommend 1 drop per dish. Otherwise, just know that you will have a VERY strong-tasting snack!

Click here to learn more about doTERRA Essential Oils.

Add some chorizo, turkey, or buffalo for an added boost of protein and flavor.

Cinna-Milk

Warm your belly and your soul with this yummy, immune boosting elixir! This warming treat is a nice caffeine-free alternative to coffee or chai. It is warm and creamy, and offers a little boost thanks to the stimulating properties of cinnamon. Cinnamon is a known immune supporting spice that is also great for your digestion (and libido!).

Cinna-Milk is packed with "good" fat, an absolute necessity for healthy cells, and other healing properties, depending on which spices you choose to include. Try it with ginger for an extra little kick of spiciness. And don't be surprised if you find a smile passing your lips as you sip this cup of enlivening goodness. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

1-2 cups raw, whole, local, organic milk (or you can use nut, seed, or coconut milk) *Note: you can also use 1/2 milk and half water if you're worried about consuming too many calories 1 cinnamon stick 1 pinch cardamom 1 pinch nutmeg 1 teaspoon raw local honey 1 drop doTERRA cinnamon essential oil

Method:

Combine all ingredients except for cinnamon oil and honey in a small saucepan, and turn to medium heat.

Allow the flavors to combine as you gently warm the milk.

When milk is almost hot (but not boiling), turn off the heat.

Add your cinnamon oil and honey.

Whisk the ingredients together, pour into a cup and sprinkle with cinnamon.

Serve and enjoy!

Benefits:

Cardamom: This spice is an excellent source of iron and manganese, making it a rock star for blood and cellular regeneration. It also contains significant amounts of riboflavin, niacin, vitamin C, and can be used as an anti-spasmodic and digestive aid. Great for the belly AND the heart. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Cinnamon: Cinnamon has long been used as a medicine. It’s a good source of manganese and calcium. It also has anti-inflammatory properties and helps to lessen unwanted blood clotting. It also has strong anti-microbial properties and help control blood sugar. The list of the powerful spice’s benefits continue, so see here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cinnamon Oil: Cinnamon essential oil helps to boost metabolism and digestive health. It is also a powerful antioxidant, helps support immunity, enhance circulation, strengthen libido and elevate mood. See here to learn more about doTerra essential oils.

Honey: Often called "Nature's sweetener," local, raw, honey is a great way to add sweetness to your life. Raw honey is packed with vitamins and minerals and offers anti-bacterial and and anti-viral properties. But according to the Ayurvedic tradition, don't cook honey. Adding significant heat to honey both strips it of its vitamins, minerals, and enzymes while creating cellular toxicity. So add it to your cool dishes, or to warmer dishes AFTER they have finished cooking. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Local Raw Milk: This is a VERY touchy subject. So I will leave it to the professionals. See here if you’re interested in learning more about raw milk. Otherwise, good organic milk is a fine alternative.

Nutmeg: Nutmeg has been used in traditional medicines as an anti-fungal, anti-depressant, aphrodisiac, digestive aid. It is also a good source of copper, potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, zinc, and magnesium, and B-complex vitamins including Vitamin C, folic acid, riboflavin, niacin, and Vitamin A. In small doses it’s great, but don’t overdo it! This powerful spice can be toxic if consumed in large amounts. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

*NOTE: Not all essential oils are created equal. I only use doTERRA because their oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, which is suitable for internal, external, and aromatherapeutic consumption.

*NOTE: All doTERRA Essential Oils are extremely potent. I’d recommend 1 drop per dish. Otherwise, just know that you will have a VERY strong-tasting snack!

Click here to learn more about doTERRA Essential Oils.

Paleo Apple Cardamom Muffins

These protein-rich muffins make a delicious on-the-go breakfast or snack. Some mornings are just too chilly for a juice or smoothie. What better way to awaken your digestive fire than a fresh muffin? They're easy to make, and are super easy on the taste buds. My husband devours them with a little ghee. I like them with homemade nut butter and jam. Put a couple in a wax paper bag keep your stomach sated (and blood sugar balanced) for hours. Bon appétit!

Ingredients:

1 16-ounce jar of organic apple sauce 1/2 cup of coconut flour 2 tablespoons organic coconut oil (melted) 6 eggs (yes, 6.) 2 teaspoon of vanilla extract 1 teaspoon of cinnamon 1 teaspoon of nutmeg 1 teaspoon cardamom 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda *Optional: 3 tablespoons honey or maple syrup *Optional: 1/4 cup walnuts or pecans *Optional: 1/4 cup chopped dates, dried currants, or dried figs

Method:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Prepare 12 muffin cups lined with paper.

In a medium mixing bowl, sift coconut flour, baking powder, baking soda, and spices together.

Whisk remaining wet ingredients.  Combine well but don’t over mix!

Divide batter between muffin cups.

Bake for about 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Benefits:

Apple Sauce:  My, what balanced phytonutrients you have, oh beloved apple. Apples contain a wide array of polyphenols which help regulate our blood sugar. They’re also a great source of Vitamin C and other antioxidants, and fiber. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cardamom: This spice is an excellent source of iron and manganese, making it a rock star for blood and cellular regeneration. It also contains significant amounts of riboflavin, niacin, vitamin C, and can be used as an anti-spasmodic and digestive aid. Great for the belly AND the heart. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Cinnamon: Cinnamon has long been used as a medicine. It’s a good source of manganese and calcium. It also has anti-inflammatory properties and helps to lessen unwanted blood clotting. It also has strong anti-microbial properties and help control blood sugar. The list of the powerful spice’s benefits continue, so see here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Dates: Dates are rich with vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin A, calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, and copper. They are also high in other antioxidants such as beta carotene and lutein, which help protect and nourish our cells. But they’re high in sugar, so a dab’ll do ya. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Organic Eggs: (Preferably pasture-fed) Eggs are a good source of low-cost high-quality protein. They provide over 6 grams of protein (13% of the daily value for protein) each, and are a good source of choline, a key component of many fat-containing structures in cell membranes, which is particularly important for brain function and health. Eggs are also a rich source of tryptophan and selenium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Nutmeg: Nutmeg has been used in traditional medicines as an anti-fungal, anti-depressant, aphrodisiac, digestive aid. It is also a good source of copper, potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, zinc, and magnesium, and B-complex vitamins including Vitamin C, folic acid, riboflavin, niacin, and Vitamin A. In small doses it’s great, but don’t overdo it! This powerful spice can be toxic if consumed in large amounts. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Pecans: Pecans contain a plethora of vitamins and minerals including vitamin A, vitamin E, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, a variety of B vitamins and zinc. One ounce of pecans provides 10 percent of the recommended Daily Value for fiber. Pecans are also a source of monounsaturated or "good" fat and protein. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Paleo Pumpkin Muffins

Warning! These are an exercise in willpower not to eat all at once. Just sayin...

This recipe was inspired by www.cindystable.com.

After a bit of a debacle making paleo banana bread muffins that resembled hockey pucks, I had nearly given up hope of perfecting a paleo any kind of muffin...Until now. These precious bites of love are light, silky, and versatile. For variety, trying replacing pumpkin with apple sauce and the walnuts with pecans. Add a sprinkle of powdered ginger or cardamom, and you will have yourself a delicious breakfast or snack. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

1 15-ounce can organic pumpkin (or make your own pumpkin puree) 1/2 cup of coconut flour 1/4 cup of coconut oil (melted) 1/4 cup apple sauce 6 eggs (yes, 6.) 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract 1 teaspoon of cinnamon 1 teaspoon of nutmeg 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda *Optional: 3 tablespoons honey or maple syrup *Optional: 1/4 cup walnuts or pecans *Optional: 1/4 cup chopped dates, dried currants, or dried figs

Method:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Prepare 12 muffin cups lined with paper.

In a medium mixing bowl, sift coconut flour, baking powder, baking soda, and spices together.

Whisk remaining wet ingredients, except for the pumpkin, together.  Combine well but don't over mix!

Fold in pumpkin mixture.

Divide batter between muffin cups.

Bake for about 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Benefits:

Apple Sauce:  My, what balanced phytonutrients you have, oh beloved apple. Apples contain a wide array of polyphenols which help regulate our blood sugar. They're also a great source of Vitamin C and other antioxidants, and fiber. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cinnamon: Cinnamon has long been used as a medicine. It’s a good source of manganese and calcium. It also has anti-inflammatory properties and helps to lessen unwanted blood clotting. It also has strong anti-microbial properties and help control blood sugar. The list of the powerful spice’s benefits continue, so see here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Dates: Dates are rich with vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin A, calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, and copper. They are also high in other antioxidants such as beta carotene and lutein, which help protect and nourish our cells. But they’re high in sugar, so a dab’ll do ya. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Organic Eggs: (Preferably pasture-fed) Eggs are a good source of low-cost high-quality protein. They provide over 6 grams of protein (13% of the daily value for protein) each, and are a good source of choline, a key component of many fat-containing structures in cell membranes, which is particularly important for brain function and health. Eggs are also a rich source of tryptophan and selenium. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Nutmeg: Nutmeg has been used in traditional medicines as an anti-fungal, anti-depressant, aphrodisiac, digestive aid. It is also a good source of copper, potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, zinc, and magnesium, and B-complex vitamins including Vitamin C, folic acid, riboflavin, niacin, and Vitamin A. In small doses it’s great, but don’t overdo it! This powerful spice can be toxic if consumed in large amounts. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Pumpkin: This tasty winter squash is packed vitamins A and C, magnesium and potassium, as well as dietary fiber. It’s also contains high amounts of carotenoids, the little nutrients which help to neutralize free-radicals within the body, and is low in calories. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Walnuts: Walnuts are powerful medicine. They are packed with valuable antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients such as omega fatty acids, manganese, and copper. Walnuts have been studied and proven to help decrease risk of certain cancers,  including prostate and breast. They also help prevent cardiovascular problems and type 2 diabetes. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

These muffins make terrific mini-PB&J sammies.

Rosemary Artichoke Hummus

Artichoke hearts lend a delightful creaminess to this hummus. A definite crowd pleaser!

This recipe was inspired by The Inadvertent Gardener.

We had private photo and film viewing party at our house recently for a budding photographer named Anneliese Zemp and the non-profit organization Unite Our World. It was amazing. Oodles of guests showed up in support to see the Anneliese's photographs and Unite Our World's documentary film about their efforts to build a self-sustaining medical clinic in a remote village in Uganda called Kampala. Yes, the evening was totally inspiring. And the food was pretty tasty too.

What does one serve at a nosh-friendly party? Hummus, of course! This new take on the old-standby that was well-received by the crowd. This recipe can easily be doubled if you're expecting lots of hungry folks to show up at your door. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

2 cloves roasted garlic, or 1 tsp. garlic powder 3 or 4 Tbs. fresh rosemary, roughly chopped, or a large pinch dried rosemary 1 15-ounce can chickpeas (or soak and cook your own) 1 15-ounce oz. can quartered artichoke hearts, packed in water 2 Tbs. tahini Juice of one lemon 3 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil 1 drop doTerra rosemary essential oil Salt to taste

Method:

Combine the garlic and rosemary in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse 8 to 10 times to chop.

Add all but 1 handful of the chickpeas, all but 1 small handful artichoke hearts, and the tahini to the bowl of the food processor. Add the essential oil to the lemon juice, stir, and add to the bowl of the food processor. Process for approximately 30 seconds. Scrape the bowl and process again while drizzling in the olive oil. Add a smidge more olive oil if the hummus feels too dry.

Add salt to taste.

Chop the remaining artichoke hearts.

Garnish the finished hummus with remaining chickpeas and artichoke, more fresh or dried rosemary and/or parsley, toasted pine nuts, paprika, and olive oil.

Serve with crackers, bread, or crudité such as jicama or daikon radish rounds for dipping. Enjoy!

*NOTE: Not all essential oils are created equal. I only use doTerra because their oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, which is suitable for internal, external, and aromatherapeutic consumption.

*NOTE: All doTerra Essential Oils are extremely potent. I’d recommend 1 drop per dish. Otherwise, just know that you will have a VERY strong-tasting snack!

Click here to learn more about doTerra Essential Oils.

Benefits:

Garbanzo Beans: Also known as “chickpeas,” these beans are particularly high in insoluble fiber, which means you have a squeaky clean colon and feel fuller for longer when eating these legumes. They are also extremely high in lots of nutrients such as manganese, folate, and tryptophan. They are a great source of plant-based protein. If you find legumes make you gassy, try pre-soaking them for easier digestion. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Lemon Juice: Lemons (and limes) are vitamin C powerhouses. Great for immunity, vitamin C can also be helpful for preventing the development and progression of atherosclerosis and diabetic heart disease. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Olive Oil: Olive Oil is packed phytonutrients including polyphenols. Most of the polyphenols in olive oil function as both antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients in the body. When eaten in moderation, olive oil can be very beneficial to our gastrointestinal and cardiovascular health. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Rosemary Essential Oil: Rosemary essential oil is an analgesic, anti-arthritic, antibacterial, anticancer, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, and antioxidant. It is commonly used for calm and stress relief, cold and flu, hair care, arthritic pain, asthma, bronchitis, and digestive issues. See here to learn more about doTerra essential oils.

Tahini: Sesame seeds (of which tahini is made) are jam packed with manganese and copper, and are a good source of calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, vitamin B1, zinc, and dietary fiber. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Spiced Fig Energy Bites

The best energy ball recipe hunt continues! These peppery confections blow fig newtons out of the water.

The best energy ball recipe hunt continues! These peppery confections blow fig newtons out of the water.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup rolled oats 1/2 cup dried flaked coconut 1/2 cup blanched almonds 4 Medjool dates, pitted 1/2-3/4 cup dried figs, destemmed 1/2-3/4 cup fresh almond cashew butter Hefty pinch cinnamon Hefty pinch cardamom Pinch sea salt Fresh ground pepper to taste 1 drop doTerra black pepper oil 1/4 cup coconut water *Optional: 1/4 cup dark mini chocolate chips...This makes this recipes take like cookie dough yumness. *NOTE: You can replace the almond cashew butter with any complimentary nut or seed butter. *NOTE: Omit the rolled oats to make this recipe paleo friendly

Method:

Place 1-2 drops black pepper oil in the coconut water and set aside.

Place all the ingredients (including the peppery coconut water) except for nut butter in a food processor with the “S” blade. Blend until grainy (entirely depends on what kind of consistency you prefer…you like crunchy, process less. You like them sans chunks, process longer.)

Add nut butter and process for another 15-30 seconds or until well-mixed.

Using a spoon and/or your hands, form into little balls and place into a glass tupperware container.

Allow to chill and set in the fridge for at least 15 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

Benefits:

Almonds: Almonds are a Supernut. High in monounsaturated fats (associated with reduced risk of heart disease), almonds contain high amounts of vitamin E, magnesium, and potassium. They are also high in protein, which makes them an ideal snack. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Black Pepper: Black Pepper essential oil is great for your digestive system. It stimulates salivary glands and secretion of digestive juices meanwhile neutralizing gas formation in the intestinal tract. Also a great cleansing agent! Black pepper oil also increases circulation, reducing inflammation, and provides relief for arthritis and other muscle and joint discomforts. Great for athletes! See here for more.

Cardamom: This spice is an excellent source of iron and manganese, making it a rock star for blood and cellular regeneration. It also contains significant amounts of riboflavin, niacin, vitamin C, and can be used as an anti-spasmodic and digestive aid. Great for the belly AND the heart. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Cinnamon: Cinnamon has long been used as a medicine. It’s a good source of manganese and calcium. It also has anti-inflammatory properties and helps to lessen unwanted blood clotting. It also has strong anti-microbial properties and help control blood sugar. The list of the powerful spice’s benefits continue, so see here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Coconut: Coconut is highly nutritious, rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Both modern and traditional medicine have recognized coconut as having antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal properties. Meanwhile coconut provides a nutritional source of quick energy, and can be used to enhance endurance and physical performance. Coconut is also soothing to the digestive tract, and aids in absorption of other nutrients within the body. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Dates: Dates are rich with vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin A, calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, and copper. They are also high in other antioxidants such as beta carotene and lutein, which help protect and nourish our cells. But they’re high in sugar, so a dab’ll do ya. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Figs: Figs are a good source of manganese, potassium, and dietary fiber. They also contain significant amounts of vitamin B6. Dried figs are an excellent sugar alternative and can be added to most recipes in place of other sweeteners. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Rolled Oats: Due to their high fiber content, oats are known to help remove cholesterol from the digestive system that would otherwise end up in the bloodstream. Oats also help maintain cardiovascular health since they contain antioxidant compound called avenanthramides, which help prevent free radicals from damaging LDL cholesterol. Oats, oat bran, and oatmeal also contain a specific type of fiber known as beta-glucan, which has been shown to help immune funtion and to stabilize blood sugar. Oats are also high in manganese, selenium, and phosphorous. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Almond Apricot Nibs

A hint of apricot extract adds a dimension of sophistication to these energy bites. The search continues for my favorite energy ball recipe. This one is great because the cinnamon and almond extract give these a distinctive flavor. What's your favorite combo? Enjoy!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup-ish almonds 1/2 cup-ish cashews 1/4 cup dried apricots 4 medjool dates, pitted 1/2 cup-ish coconut flakes Pinch sea salt 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon 1 tsp. organic almond extract 3/4 cup-ish nut/seed butter

Method:

Add all the ingredients but for the nut butter to a food processor and blend until desired consistency (large grainy is probably best).

Pour into a large bowl and add the nut/seed butter and stir until well-mixed.

Using a spoon and/or your hands, form into balls and put into large glass tupperware with lid.

Allow to chill and harden in the fridge for at least 15 minutes.

Benefits:

Almonds: Almonds are a Supernut. High in monounsaturated fats (associated with reduced risk of heart disease), almonds contain high amounts of vitamin E, magnesium, and potassium. They are also high in protein, which makes them an ideal snack. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Apricots: Apricots are rich with beta-carotene and fiber, both of which help promote heart health. They are also good sources of vitamins A and C. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cashews: Cashews have a lower fat content than most other nuts, and approximately 75% of their fat is unsaturated fatty acids. What’s more is that about 75% of this unsaturated fatty acid content is oleic acid, the same monounsaturated or “good fat” found in olive oil. This super nut is also packed with copper, manganese, magnesium, and tryptophan (the “feel good” amino acid”). See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Coconut: Coconut is highly nutritious, rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Both modern and traditional medicine have recognized coconut as having antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal properties. Meanwhile coconut provides a nutritional source of quick energy, and can be used to enhance endurance and physical performance. Coconut is also soothing to the digestive tract, and aids in absorption of other nutrients within the body. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Dates: Dates are rich with vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin A, calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, and copper. They are also high in other antioxidants such as beta carotene and lutein, which help protect and nourish our cells. But they’re high in sugar, so a dab’ll do ya. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Raw Nutty Energy Nibs

I have a food processor and I'm not afraid to use it! Some friends of ours came in for a visit last weekend and taught me a thing or two about my least used kitchen appliance: the food processor. I have relied heavily on my Vitamix blender for the last year, and had only but once broken the seal of the other worthy appliance...until now. My friend, April, taught me how to make a hearty breakfast/snack that comes in more variations than paint colors, and I am SO excited to explore them all.

Introducing Nutty Energy Nibs! Sure, on other blogs they are probably called "energy balls," but that seemed like such a let down of a title for these spheres of energizing nutrient-dense goodness!

Without further adieu, here are two of my favorite combos so far. Please comment and share your own! I'd love to see what other folks are coming up with.

Mmm...chocolate crunchy deliciousness!

Ingredients:

Nutty Energy Nibs:

1/4 cup-ish almonds 1/4 cup-ish pepitas 1/4 cup-ish cashews 1/2 cup-ish coconut flakes 1/4 cup-ish dark cherries 1/2 cup-ish rolled oats Pinch sea salt 1 tsp. organic vanilla extract 3/4 cup-ish nut/seed butter 1/4 cup maple syrup

Chocolate Salty...Nibs

1/4 cup-ish almonds 1/4 cup-ish pepitas 1/4 cup-ish sunflower seeds 1/4 cup-ish cashews 1/2 cup-ish coconut flakes 3 Tbs. raw, organic cocoa powder 1/4 cup cacao nibs 1/4 cup dried blueberries 3 medjool dates, pits removed Pinch sea salt 3/4 cup-ish nut/seed butter

Method:

Add all the ingredients but for the nut butter to a food processor and blend until desired consistency (large grainy is probably best).

Pour into a large bowl and add the nut/seed butter and stir until well-mixed.

Using a spoon and/or your hands, form into balls and put into large glass tupperware with lid.

Allow to chill and harden in the fridge for at least 15 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

Benefits:

Almonds: Almonds are a Supernut. High in monounsaturated fats (associated with reduced risk of heart disease), almonds contain high amounts of vitamin E, magnesium, and potassium. They are also high in protein, which makes them an ideal snack. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Blueberries: These berries should get their own cape. They are a superfood, packed with antioxidants that can help prevent cancer, meanwhile protecting your nervous system and brain health. They're rich with manganese, and Vitamins K and C, and are also a good source of dietary fiber. See here for more health benefits and nutritional info.

Cacao: Organic cacao is a legit superfood. It abounds with Vitamin A, C, and E, and a plethora of B vitamins, as well as, magnesium, copper, calcium, manganese, zinc, sulphur, iron, chromium, phosphorus, and Omega 6 fatty acids. It is also high in protein and fiber. Move over spinach! See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Cashews: Cashews have a lower fat content than most other nuts, and approximately 75% of their fat is unsaturated fatty acids. What's more is that about 75% of this unsaturated fatty acid content is oleic acid, the same monounsaturated or "good fat" found in olive oil. This super nut is also packed with copper, manganese, magnesium, and tryptophan (the "feel good" amino acid"). See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Coconut: Coconut is highly nutritious, rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Both modern and traditional medicine have recognized coconut as having antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal properties. Meanwhile coconut provides a nutritional source of quick energy, and can be used to enhance endurance and physical performance. Coconut is also soothing to the digestive tract, and aids in absorption of other nutrients within the body. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Dates: Dates are rich with vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin A, calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, and copper. They are also high in other antioxidants such as beta carotene and lutein, which help protect and nourish our cells. But they’re high in sugar, so a dab’ll do ya. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information.

Pepitas (Hulled Pumpkin Seeds): These babies are packed with zinc and vitamin E, but are also excellent sources of manganese, tryptophan, magnesium, phosphorus, and copper. They are also very high in protein. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Rolled Oats: Due to their high fiber content, oats are known to help remove cholesterol from the digestive system that would otherwise end up in the bloodstream. Oats also help maintain cardiovascular health since they contain antioxidant compound called avenanthramides, which help prevent free radicals from damaging LDL cholesterol. Oats, oat bran, and oatmeal also contain a specific type of fiber known as beta-glucan, which has been shown to help immune funtion and to stabilize blood sugar. Oats are also high in manganese, selenium, and phosphorous. See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

Sunflower Seeds: A handful of sunflower seeds will supply significant amounts of vitamin E (the body's primary fat-soluble antioxidant, which is also an anti-inflamatory and cardiovascular health superstar), magnesium (which has been said to help reduce the severity of asthma, lower high blood pressure, and prevent migraine headaches, as well as reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke), and selenium (helpful for DNA and cellular repair). See here for more health benefits and nutritional information. Many suggest that soaking nuts (and grains, legumes, and seeds) before consuming them enhances their nutritional quality.

April stirring it all together and showing me how it's done.