In Goodies Against The Grain: June 2014

Monday, June 30, 2014

4th of July Fireworks Tarts

These are the perfect 4th of July treats to devour at your holiday picnic! They are dairy-free, grain-free, paleo, and extremely delicious! Imagine this: a mini pie filled with a rich custard, and topped with refreshing berries. Now, who can say no to that?

Makes 6 mini tarts.

For the Paleo Tart Crust:

2 cups blanched almond flour or almond meal
¼ teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 egg

Ingredients for the Filling:
1/2 cup raw cashews
3 Tbs full-fat coconut milk
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 tsp raw honey
1 tsp lemon juice (I use Santa Cruise Organic, but you can also use it fresh from a lemon.)
Red and blue fresh berries for topping (I used blueberries and strawberries.)

For the Crust:

1. Place the flour, salt, oil, and the egg in a food processor, and pulse until mixture forms a ball.
2. Using your fingers, press the dough into a Whoopie pie pan, or a mini tart pan. Note: I recommend pressing the dough slightly above the sides of the Whoopie pie cups, for easier removal. The dough should yield 6 mini tart crusts.
3. Bake the crusts at 350° for 8-11 minutes, until slightly crispy around the edges.
4. Let them cool for 15 minutes, then remove them from the pan, and onto a plate.

For the Filling:

1. Soak the cashews in a bowl of water for 15-20 minutes to soften them, then discard the water.
2. Place the cashews, coconut milk, vanilla, honey, and lemon juice in a food processor, and pulse until a creamy consistency forms, and there are no lumps or chunks left.
Note: it may take a few minutes of pulsing to get the creaminess to form, but be patient.
3. Scoop the "cream" into a small bowl, and refrigerate for 15 minutes.

To Finish Up:

1. Place 1 dollop of the "cream" into each mini tart.
2. Top with red and blue berries.
3. Serve the tarts and exclaim,"Happy Fourth of July!!!".

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Cinnamon Vanilla Ice Cream Sandwiches

YUM! That's all I can say when I think of two luscious cinnamon cookies filled with vanilla ice cream. When I created this recipe, it was meant to be for paleo graham crackers, but they came out of the oven really chewy, so my family said, "You should turn these cookies into ice cream sandwiches. They would be so yummy!" So, the "Paleo Graham Cracker" recipe is now known as the "Cinnamon Vanilla Ice Cream Sandwich" recipe! The cookies are only mildly sweet, so they are complemented nicely by the sweetness of the ice cream. Also, to help you guys and gals understand how I made the cookies, I posted some pictures of my process below some of the steps. Happy baking and eating!

Makes 4 ice cream sandwiches.


2 cups blanched almond flour
2 Tbs arrowroot starch/powder
1/4 cup plus 1 Tbs pure maple syrup (or honey, if you don't want your cookies to taste slightly maple-y)
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp sea salt
Vanilla ice cream (I used dairy ice cream, but you can also use a non-dairy alternative, such as coconut)


1. Using a stand mixer or a hand mixer, stir together all of the ingredients. After a few seconds of mixing, the dough will start to resemble course crumbs. When it reaches that point, let it mix for about a minute, until the dough starts to form a ball.
2. Place the dough on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and roll it out until it's 1/4 inch thick.

3. Using a cookie cutter, cut circles out of the dough. If you use a 3-inch cutter like I did, the dough should yield 8 circles, which makes 4 ice cream sandwiches.
4. If you want to add a little style to your cookies, poke little holes in them with a toothpick.

5. Bake the cookies at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes.
6. Let them cool for at least 20 minutes before adding the ice cream.
7. Before making the sandwiches, make sure your vanilla ice cream is REALLY cold. (Mine wasn't very cold the first time, so it completely melted on the cookies and dripped everywhere. Luckily
my dogs are really good lickers!)
8. Put one scoop of ice cream on one of the cookies, then place another cookie on top of that, creating a sandwich. Repeat this with the rest of the cookies. Enjoy!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Refreshing Whole Fruit Popsicles

"This is the best popsicle I've ever had!!!" - Jackie, age 15. They are so refreshing, full of flavor and so fun to make! You can use whatever fruit you have at home to put in the molds, which makes the ingredients in this recipe very versatile. I happened to have had some kiwi on hand, which made the popsicles stunning! Also, this recipe is made with only whole fruit, and does not contain any pre-made fruit juice or added sugar, which makes the popsicles all the more delicious.

Makes about 10 popsicles (depending on the size of your molds, my medium-sized molds made 10).


 4-5 cups seedless watermelon, cubed (the amount needed depends on the size of your popsicle molds)
1 cup blueberries
1 nectarine or peach, diced
2 kiwis, peeled and sliced


1. Set out about 10 popsicle molds.
2. In a blender, puree the watermelon until it forms a juice.
3. Place a slice of kiwi in each mold, then distribute the blueberries and nectarine pieces into the molds, along side the kiwi.
4. Pour the watermelon juice into each mold, on top of the fruit, filling each all the way up.
5. Place a wooden popsicle stick or the mold's holder into each mold.
6. Place all the molds in the freezer, and freeze popsicles for at least 8 hours.
7. Run warm water over the molds to loosen the popsicles, then remove them, and enjoy!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Easy Peasy: Paleo Blueberry Mini Muffins

While playing with my friend Mikayla today, we decided we wanted to bake something quick and easy for our growling tummies. "What is better to make than mini blueberry muffins?", we asked ourselves. The answer was: Nothing. So, in no time at all, the batter was in muffin tins and getting put in the oven! Fifteen minutes later, we were gobbling up all of the delicious muffins. I know you and your kids will enjoy them as much as we did!

Makes 3 dozen mini muffins.

2 cups blanched almond flour
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup  coconut oil
4 eggs
5 Tbs pure maple syrup
6 Tbs almond milk
1 Tbs pure vanilla extract
1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries


1. In a large bowl, mix together the flours, baking soda, and salt.
2. In a small bowl, mix together the oil, eggs, syrup, almond milk, and vanilla.
3. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry, and mix until thoroughly combined.
4. Gently stir in the blueberries.
5. Line a mini muffin tin with paper liners and spoon the batter into each one, filling it almost to the top.
6. Place the tin in the oven and bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Vegan Chocolate Mousse

I love coconut. It is by far my favorite food to eat and cook with, so I decided I should create a recipe with the main ingredient being coconut. This vegan, superfood-filled, fruit-sweetened chocolate mousse is such a crowd pleaser and it's so easy to make! If you're wondering where to find a whole young coconut, try checking your local super-market. I buy mine at Whole Foods, and Von's sometimes carries them. Happy coconut-hunting, and enjoy this incredible mousse!
Serves 2 people.


The flesh of 1 young coconut (My coconut had about 3/4 cup flesh in it, but most coconuts have at least 1 cup, mine was unusually small.)
1/2 cup coconut water
1 ripe banana (If it's SUPER ripe and sweet, you may only need to use half of it, but otherwise, use the whole thing.)
1/4 cup raw raw cacao powder
1 Tbs chia seeds
1 Tbs flax seeds


 1. With your high speed blender on high, blend all ingredients together until thick and creamy.
2. Pour mixture into an airtight container, and place in the fridge for at least two hours to solidify and chill.
3. Spoon into small bowls, top with berries,
and serve!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Lemon Cupcakes with Strawberry Whipped Cream

Usually, I'm not a huge fan of cupcakes because of their huge amounts of sugar and overly sweet frosting, but these are different. They are grain free and moist with a lemon-y kick, and the frosting is just whipped cream with strawberries and naturally colored with beets. These are not filled with tons of sweetness, but they have just enough to satisfy your sweet tooth. And they're incredibly delicious!

Makes 6 cupcakes.  

 Ingredients for the Cupcakes:

 1/2 cup blanched almond flour
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/4 cup, plus 2 Tbs coconut palm sugar (Trader Joe's carries this)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp sea salt
3 large eggs
1 Tbs fresh lemon zest
2 Tbs coconut oil, melted, plus a little bit more for greasing
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup almond or coconut milk

Ingredients for the Strawberry Whipped Cream:

2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 cup organic strawberries, chopped, plus more for garnish
1 Tbs beet, diced
1 tsp maple syrup or honey (optional, I didn't use it)

Directions for the Cupcakes:

1. In a small bowl, mix together the flours, coconut sugar, baking soda and salt.
2. In a medium sized bowl, stir together the eggs, zest, coconut oil, vanilla and milk, until thoroughly combined.
3. Pour dry ingredients into wet, and stir until they're all combined.
4. Line a muffin tin with paper liners and dab a little bit of coconut oil on the bottom of each one, to ensure the muffins don't stick.
5. Scoop batter into the liners, filling each almost all the way to the top. The batter should fill 6 liners.
6. Bake the muffins at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes.
7. When they are done, remove the muffin tin from the oven and let them cool for at least 30 minutes before frosting.

Directions for the Whipped Cream:

1. With your high speed blender on its lowest setting, gently blend together the cream, strawberries, beet, and sweetener until there are no lumps. DO NOT OVER-BLEND! (Over-blending will make the cream too stiff.)
2. Transfer mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer,(or a regular bowl, if you'll be using a hand mixer)
 and whisk on high until stiff peak forms. Do not over-whisk!
3. Frost the cupcakes, garnish with chopped strawberries (optional), and serve!
4. Enjoy the deliciousness!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Watermelon Slushie

Summer is here! And what does this mean, you might ask? WATERMELON! End of story.

2 cups fresh watermelon, cubed
1 cup frozen watermelon, cubed
1 cup ice cubes
2 Tbs water


1. In a high-speed blender, (I use a Vitamix) blend together the water with the frozen and fresh watermelon until it forms a thick juice. NOTE: before blending, you may need to use a wooden spoon to smash the watermelon closer to the blade, for easier blending.
2. With the blender on low, blend in the ice.
3. Pour into glasses and serve.

Serves 2 thirsty people.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Father's Day Mint Brownies

These mint brownies are so delicious, and SUPER easy to make. Plus, they are dairy, gluten, and grain free! Also, if you don't like the flavor of chocolate-mint, you can omit the peppermint extract and just make the brownies chocolate, which is also totally yummy! I have a family of rich chocolate lovers who don't like things overly sweet, and they LOVE these brownies, and I know you will, too!

Makes one 9x13-inch pan of brownies.


1 (16 ounce) jar creamy roasted almond butter
2 eggs
1 cup pure maple syrup or honey
1 Tbs vanilla extract
1 tsp pure peppermint extract
1/2 cup cacao powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup dark chocolate chips


1. In a large bowl, blend almond butter until smooth with a hand blender or stand mixer.
2. Blend in eggs, then blend in syrup, vanilla and peppermint extract.
3. Blend in cacao, salt and baking soda, then fold in chocolate chips.
4. Grease a 9x13-inch baking dish, then pour the batter into the dish.
5. Bake at 325 degrees for approx. 30 minutes.
6. Cut brownies into squares and serve!

Tropical Green Smoothie

This smoothie is super easy to make, full of nutritious greens, and so refreshing on hot summer days! I love this recipe because it's great to substitute ingredients in it. You can use coconut butter or oil, coconut milk or almond milk, and frozen mango or pineapple.


3 Tbs coconut manna (butter) or coconut oil
2 1/2 cups coconut water, almond milk, or coconut milk
2-3 cups spinach (depending on how green you want it)
1 cup frozen mango
1 handful ice (optional)


1. Blend all ingredients together in a high speed blender until smooth and creamy.
2. Pour into glasses and serve!

Serves 2-3 people.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Chocolate Mint Power Balls (Raw, Vegan, and Paleo!)

Pleasantly sweet and full of flavor, these minty power balls are easy to eat on the go, for breakfast, lunch, and everything in between! They contain so many yummy superfoods, such as coconut, cacao, chia, and flax. What's not to like? WARNING: THESE  TREATS ARE HIGHLY ADDICTIVE!
Don't say I didn't warn you. ;)


1/2 cup sunflower seeds
3 Tbs chia seeds seeds
3 Tbs golden flax seeds
3 Tbs cacao nibs
1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
3 Tbs coconut oil, melted
2 Tbs honey or maple syrup
2 Tbs sunflower seed butter
3 Tbs fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
1/4 cup blanched almond flour/almond meal

1. In a medium bowl, mix together the seeds and nibs with your hands. Then mix in the coconut oil and shredded coconut.
2. Stir in the honey, sunflower seed butter, and then the almond meal/ flour, then gently mix in mint.
3. Press the mixture onto a glass plate and place it in the freezer to harden for 10 minutes.
4. Remove the "dough" from the freezer and knead/ squeeze it into many 1-inch balls.
5. Place the balls on the plate and refrigerate until served.

Makes about 16 power balls.