Why Not Make It a Cheesecake Smoothie?

Strawberry Cheesecake Smoothie

Smoothies are a standard part of my daily menu, but I’ve been missing something.

Something wonderful.

You can turn any smoothie recipe into a cheesecake version by adding one thing.  Cottage cheese…which I ordinarily loath.

Ask me to eat a cottage cheese snack, and I’m out.  No thanks. A cheesecake smoothie?  Yes, please.

For example, your lunch today could be a Strawberry Cheesecake Smoothie.

Strawberry Cheesecake Smoothie

Strawberry Cheesecake Smoothie

  • 6-7 strawberries (frozen or fresh)
  • 1 serving vanilla protein powder
  • 5-6 ice cubes
  • 1 1/2 cup of water or almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons of vanilla flavor
  • 2 tablespoons of cottage cheese (or more if you want)
  • Spinach (optional)

Just try it.  You will love.

Yes, I Make Brownies So I Can Lick the Bowl

batter

Question: Why did you decide to make brownies today?

Answer (100% of the time): because I was really craving some brownie batter

Whether you love warm brownies or licking the bowl, this recipe is just for you.  Honey instead of sugar.  Whole wheat flour instead of white.  Greek yogurt instead of a bunch of oil.  Ahhh.  The brownie.

I’ve been living in oatmeal and smoothie land lately.  It’s not exactly right to say I have a sweet tooth because none of my recipes have added sugar in them, but I definitely prefer a dessert-like treat to almost anything.  This brownie recipe is just keeping with my trend.   It’s a little variation of a Jillian Michaels recipe I found.

Here’s what you need:

  • 2/3 cup of honey
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup vanilla greek yogurt (I used a whole single-serving cup)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla flavor

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees and spray a small baking dish (8×8) with an olive oil spray.

Step one: In a microwave-safe bowl, heat the 2/3 cup of honey in the microwave for 45 seconds.  Add the 1/3 cup of cocoa.  Use a fork to combine until smooth.  Set the mixture in the refrigerator to cool while you do the next part.

honey and cocoa

Step two: Stir together  1/2 cup of whole wheat flour, 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder,  1/4 teaspoon of baking soda, and 1/4 teaspoon of salt.

flour

Step three: Combine the 1/2 cup of greek yogurt, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 egg, and 3/4 teaspoons of vanilla.  Whisk until smooth.  Add the cooled honey and cocoa.  Stir in the flour mixture.  Combine all until smooth and none of the flour is visible in the mixture.

brownies

 

Step four: Spread the mixture into a the greased baking dish and cook for 25 minutes.

browniesDon’t worry, I left some in the bowl for some licking.

IMG_1060Now, if anyone can tell me how to keep brownies from cracking on top, I really would be Betty Crocker.  Enjoy!

brownies

 

 

Cinnamon Banana Oatmeal Cookies

Cinnamon Banana Oatmeal Cookies

That’s all.

  • 1 very ripe banana
  • 1/2 cup of oats (more if you want)
  • 1 tablespoon of cinnamon

Mash the banana in a bowl, add the oats, and stir.  Add the cinnamon.  Mix it all together until completely combined. Spoon  onto a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper.  Cook in a 375 degree oven for 25 minutes.

Cinnamon Banana Oatmeal Cookies

Tastes just like banana bread.  You will love.

Add some peanut butter to them and let me know how that works out!  This recipe only makes about eight cookies, so double and triple as you please.

Pumpkin Ice Cream

My kitchen is full of gadgets.  All of which I think are completely necessary.  A few years ago I got a Cuisinart Ice Cream and Sorbet Maker for my birthday.  For a while, I didn’t use it because it was right around that time that I decided to stop eating crap all the time…which ruled out ice cream.

Then I discovered that this thing can make ice cream out of pretty much anything–greek yogurt, almond milk, bananas, etc.  In other words,  I can make it as low-calorie as I want.

Still trying to use up all the pumpkin in my refrigerator, I came up with this:

20140122-101511.jpg

Pumpkin Ice Cream

  • 2 cups of unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 tablespoons of pumpkin butter
  • 1 tablespoon of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • 1 packet of stevia
  • 1 tablespoon of PB2 (optional)

Whisk all the ingredients together in a bowl.  Turn on the ice cream maker and pour in the ingredients.  It only takes about ten minutes until your ice cream is ready to go!

These ice cream makers aren’t too pricey.  If you’re interested in getting one, check Bed Bath & Beyond.  You can use a 20% off coupon there.  Sometimes Williams-Sonoma has a deal on these that includes an extra freezer bowl.  It ends up being a great deal.  As always, Amazon.com has a great price on them every day.

Those Little Pizza Balls

dad wil pizza balls

Well, that’s what we called them. Apparently, the enchiladas I made last night weren’t a crowd favorite.  My brother and I liked them, but others seemed to think they were “eh.”  I had to redeem myself. My mom made a … Continue reading

M&M Chickpea Cookies

m&m cookies

I guess these chickpea cookies are like my signature dessert.  You can make them a hundred different ways.  These were inspired by the holiday clearance rack at Wal-Mart.  Who can turn down a 50% off bag of holiday baking M&M’s? … Continue reading

Finally a Finished Christmas Tree and Chickpea Cookies

There are other adjectives I could put in front of chickpea, but there are so many I just decided to leave it at that.  They are really peanut butter banana oatmeal chickpea cookies, but whatevs.  I’ll get to these in a second.

After a harrowing attempt at putting up my Christmas tree last night, it is finally completed.  Let’s just say don’t buy cheap lights.  There is a reason why they are cheap.  After decorating my tree, un-decorating my tree, going back to target, and redecorating my tree, it’s finally Christmas at my house.

Tree

Now, for the important part.

These cookies are so easy to make-especially if you have a food processor.  Dump the following into your food processor:

1 can of chickpeas

2 tablespoons of peanut butter (natural or homemade is best)

2 tablespoons of PB2 (Read about PB2)

1/4 cup of plain greek yogurt

A few squeezes of agave syrup (I don’t like my cookies super sweet, so I don’t use too much) OR 1/4 cup of brown sugar

1 tablespoon of cocoa powder

2 tablespoons of cinnamon

1 tablespoon of vanilla flavor

1/2 cup of oats

1/4 cup of almond milk

IMG_0103

Process to this consistency.

Use a spatula to put the dough in bowl.  Mix in some chocolate chips.

You can always just eat it with a spoon and forget the oven (like I do).

You can always just eat it with a spoon and forget the oven (like I do).

Spoon the dough onto a cookie sheet.  Bake at 350 for about ten minutes.

This cookie dough can be doctored up with all kinds of things. I threw a banana in there for my last batch.  Gave it a little pop!

Chickpea Cookies