Monday, March 12, 2012

Gluten/Dairy Free Brownies

This recipe was sent to me from a friend of my mom's.  I adjusted her recipe just a little.  These were really easy to make and are pretty tasty. The kids and I really liked them. Chris wasn't a huge fan.

Chocolate Brownies
1.5 cups dairy free chocolate chips, melted (we use Enjoy Life brand)
1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
4 eggs
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking powder*

1.  Melt chocolate chips and set aside.
2.  Add 2 eggs and the beans in a food processor or blender until pureed (we love our Ninja!).
3.  Add last 2 eggs and pulse to combine.
4.  Place melted chocolate, sugar and baking powder in processor or blender with bean mixture and pulse until combined and smooth.
5.  Pour batter into a greased 9x13 pan.
6.  Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes or until set.

*If you like your brownies more dense and less cake-like use 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder.

I think this recipe would make pretty good cupcakes - or even a cake!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Gluten Free, Dairy Free Granola Bars

Made these today on the recommendation of my mom and sister.  Mama found it online and it's an adaptation of a recipe from Ina Garten.

Granola Bars

  • 2 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 cup sliced almonds (I used walnuts)
  • 1 cup shredded coconut, loosely packed
  • 1/2 cup flax seed
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter (Earth Balance) or coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups of dried fruit/seeds/add-ins (I used 1/2 cup raisins, a few cranberries that were left in the bag, 1/2 cup dried dates and 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips)
  • Preheat oven to 350.  Butter and 8x12 inch baking dish and line it with parchment paper.
  • Toss the oatmeal, almonds and coconut together on a sheet pan and bake for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned.
  • Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl and stir in the flax seed.
  • Reduce the oven temperature to 300.
  • Place butter, syrup, honey, vanilla, salt and cinnamon in a small saucepan.  Bring to a boil over medium heat.  Cook and stir for a minutes, then pour over toasted oatmeal mixture.
  • Add in the fruit/seeds/add-ins and stir well.*****
  • Pour the mixture into the prepared pan.  Using a piece of parchment paper lightly press the mixture evenly into the pan.  
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes, until light golden brown.
  • Cool for at least 2-3 hours before cutting.
I wrapped mine individually - easy to grab for a quick breakfast or snack.

*****I wasn't thinking when I did this step and added the chocolate chips in with everything else.  The hot liquid melted the chips but it didn't cause a problem with the final product.  The flavor is there you just can't see the mini chips.  

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Raisin Bran Breakfast Muffin

This is a recipe I found on a friend's Pinterest board a few days ago.  They are so good!

Raisin Bran Breakfast Muffins

  • 1 1/2 cups raisin bran cereal
  • 1 cup milk, warmed (I forgot to warm mine...oops...still worked)
  • 1 heaping cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (this makes the muffins!  it gives them a nice nutty flavor)
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • Preheat oven to 400.
  • Line muffin pan, or spray with non-stick spray
  • Put cereal in a bowl with the milk and leave it for about 5 minutes, until cereal is soft.  Having milk warm helps with this.
  • Combine flour, baking powder, salt and spices in a large bowl.  Stir in raisins.
  • In smaller bowl beat egg, brown sugar and oils together.  Add to flour mixture.
  • Pour in milk/cereal mixture and mix until smooth.
  • Spoon batter into muffin pan and sprinkle a little extra brown sugar on top.
  • Bake for 20 minutes, until firm.
  • Allow to cool for 5 minutes in pan then transfer.
These last in an air-tight container for about 5 days....or keep a few out and freeze the rest for later!

Original post:

Elderberry Syrup

Our family learned about elderberry syrup when we learned of our daughters food sensitivities.  The doctor recommended it as an immune system booster in some of our conversation.  Always interested in homeopathic/homemade/non-prescription stuff we looked into it.

Turns out elderberries are very high in potassium and vitamin C...makes sense that they are good for keeping your body well!!  They strengthen the immune system and work pretty good at knocking out anything that does sneak in.

Elderberry syrup can be found in most local drug stores - under the name "Sambucol" - but it's super pricey!  $12-$15 only gets you about 4 ounces.

It didn't take long for my mom - always on the hunt for a way to make stuff at home - to find a recipe and the supplies.

Elderberry Syrup
I was able to fill up one pint size jar and almost an entire 1/2 pint jar with this recipe


  • 1/2 cup dried elderberries (check out Mountain Rose Herbs)
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 Tbs freshly grated ginger
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup honey (wild, local is best if you can get it)
  • Add dried berries, cinnamon stick, ginger, cloves and water to a pot.  Bring to a boil.  Cover and reduce to a simmer.  Simmer until reduced about 1/2 (20-30 minutes).
  • Dump syrup into strainer and press through into a bowl (using a spoon to press down).  Let mixture cool slightly then add honey and stir to mix well.
  • Store in fridge.
Directions for use:
Adults take 1 Tablespoon a day and children take 1 teaspoon a day when well.  Increase to 4 times a day if sick.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Favorite Gluten and Dairy Free Snacks

Just thought it would be helpful to list the things Savannah enjoys for snacks that are gluten and dairy free.

  • Hormel turkey pepperoni - I got our current pack on sale at Aldi but I'm sure they can be found at Food Lion and Harris Teeter.
  • Popcorn - we pop ours on the stove top using coconut oil and adding a little bit of salt once it's popped
  • Rice krispy treats - I try to keep individual portions in the freezer.
  • Fresh fruit - we do a lot of oranges, apples, bananas and grapes right now.  I can't wait for the Spring so we can have yummy berries.
  • Baby carrots - these are hit and miss.  She especially loves the teeny tiny ones.
  • Peanut butter banana bites
  • Smoothies - like this one, or one of these, or this one, or this one,
  • Nuts - she likes most everything she's tried but we typically stick with pistachios and peanuts
  • Peanut butter on a spoon - our kids LOVE this!
  • Raisins, cranberries
  • Peanut butter cookies - again, I keep these in the freezer.
  • Chex cereal - they have some really good flavors now that are gluten free!  Our favorites are the honey nut and cinnamon.
  • Plain potato chips
  • Corn tortilla chips - she tried guacamole the other night and liked it.  Occasionally she'll eat salsa or dip that I've made
  • Yogurt - yes, this is dairy....but it doesn't seem to bother her.  And, she doesn't get it all the time.  Maybe once a week.  I either make some or I will buy a plain, greek yogurt.  I like Fage.  We have recently been using this in place of sour cream.  Delicious.  For snacking I usually mix in a little honey or homemade jam or fresh fruit.