Cocoa Lime Energy Balls

* This recipe was originally posted in March 2015. The page was updated in October 2019.

Have you ever tried making your own energy balls? It’s so easy! You simply throw all the ingredients in a food processor, whizz for a few seconds then shape the mixture into balls. It couldn’t easier! 

What I especially love about these balls is that they taste decadent, yet they’re packed full of nutrient-rich ingredients that are not only going to increase our energy levels, but also boost our health in general. Each ball is filled with protein, heart-healthy fats, complex carbs, fibre, plus a whole host of minerals and antioxidant compounds. It’s amazing just how much goodness you can fit into one little ball!

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Chocolate Banana Ice Cream Smoothie Bowl (Dairy-Free)

* This post was originally posted in July 2016. The page was updated in August 2019.

In the hot summer months, nothing beats a cooling bowl of ice cream smoothie for breakfast. It might sound a bit indulgent to eat ice cream for breakfast, however this is no ordinary dairy and sugar-laden ice cream. The base is a blend of frozen banana and plant milk that magically transforms into the creamiest, smoothest soft serve. This is one ice cream that you can indulge in to your heart’s content!

As well as a great warm weather breakfast option, this ice cream smoothie bowl also makes a delicious post-school and exercise snack.

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Vegan Gingerbread Waffles

The waffle obsession continues! And for this month’s Suma Blogger’s Network entry, I thought I’d share another one of our favourite vegan waffle recipes. Filled with the warming spices of cinnamon, ginger and Blackstrap molasses, these waffles are perfect for this time of year  

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I wrote about the amazing nutritional profile of Blackstrap molasses in this Gingerbread Cookie post. With just one tablespoon containing 3.6 mg of iron (more iron than 1/2 cup of cooked lentils, beans or spinach), it’s easily one of my favourite ways to boost iron levels.

The recipe is largely an amalgamation of our favourite gingerbread and banana pancake recipes, with a slight reduction of the liquid to make a sturdier batter. Banana acts as a great binder for the waffles and adds a touch of extra sweetness.

Gingerbread Waffles

I’ve really enjoyed reading about your favourite waffle toppings under last week’s Easy Vegan Waffle Post. As I would have expected, maple syrup came out on top. Nuts, banana and chocolate were very popular too, and I’m totally with you on those. One of my favourite lazy Sunday breakfast/brunches is these Gingerbread waffles, served with banana slices, chopped walnuts and pecans, and a big drizzle of chocolate sauce.

Gingerbread Waffles with Chocolate Sauce

Sometimes I make the chocolate sauce myself, other times I simply grab a bottle of Sweet Freedom Choc Shot. Have you tried Choc Shot before? As well as tasting yummy, I love the fact that it contains all natural ingredients, is free from cane sugar and has a low glycaemic load (GL). Can you see how shiny it is too? It’s got the most awesome sheen!

And if I’m going all out, I’ll also top them with a sprinkling of desiccated coconut.

Pure. Waffle. Heaven

Gingerbread Waffles with Chocolate Sauce

Products used in this recipe
Doves Farms Gluten Free Brown Bread Flour  or Doves Farm Gluten Free Plain White Flour
Meridian Organic Blackstrap Molasses
Sweet Freedom Choc Shot

And now for my favourite part of the photo shoot. Tucking in time! 😛

Gingerbread Waffles with Chocolate Sauce

Quinoa Super Salad with Ginger Lime and Sweet Chilli Dressing

When The Health Bay invited me to take part in a January healthy recipe challenge, I knew which recipe would be perfect for sharing this month. It’s one of my family’s all-time favourite salads, packed with vibrant colours, contrasting textures and dressed in the most delicious tangy vinaigrette. It also happens to be brimming with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, so it’s great for keeping our immune systems strong and warding off those nasty Winter bugs.

Quinoa Rainbow Salad

Forget chips and chocolate, this is the food I most often crave. Every time I eat it, I feel so energized. My body feels like it’s literally zinging from all that goodness. Lil’ L absolutely loves it too and it sure does brighten up his lunchbox!

The salad contains two complete sources of protein – quinoa and edamame beans – which, combined with the healthy fats in the dressing, help to keep you feeling full up for longer. You don’t normally think of salads as being filling, but this one definitely is!

Quinoa is widely available these days. You can even buy ready-cooked pouches, which could be a useful starting point if you’re a newbie to this super seed. Though more expensive and a little more difficult to find, I love the tri-colour quinoa. Not only is it pretty, but it also has a lovely, slightly crunchy texture.

Tri Colour Quinoa

To save time in the week, I often cook a double batch of quinoa, then we use one batch for salad and the other for a hot main meal. However, if you’re starting this salad from scratch, you can prepare the other ingredients and dressing while the quinoa is cooking.

Boil or steam a cup of edamame beans for 3 minutes.

Edamame Soya Beans

Deseed and finely chop a sweet romano or bell pepper.

Sweet Romano Pepper

Finely julienne a carrot.

Carrot Julienned

Roughly chop some fresh coriander leaves and spring onions.

Coriander Leaves

Whizz all the dressing ingredients together until smooth.

Ginger, Lime & Sweet Chilli Dressing

Once the quinoa is cooked, I like to stir through a couple of teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil. I find this greatly enhances the texture and flavour of the quinoa.

Quinoa Cookied

You then simply need to combine all the salad ingredients and stir in the dressing until the quinoa is fully coated.

Time to tuck in!

Quinoa Rainbow Salad

 

 

Maple Pecan Granola Clusters

Today, I’d like to share one of Lil’ L’s all-time favourite breakfasts.

I started making home-made granola about five years ago in response to Lil’ L’s dislike for the dried fruits that appear in shop-bought granolas.  After a week of picking out the raisins from a granola before serving it to him, I decided that life was far too short to waste time picking out dried fruit and that I would have a try at making my own granola instead!  By making it myself, I would be able to tailor the granola to suit all our tastes.  Lil’ L loves nutty granola, I love a mix of nuts and dried fruits, while Mark will eat anything.

Maple Pecan Granola

By making our own, we could also omit the refined sugars and oils that are found in shop-bought granolas and replace them with healthy, natural alternatives.

Maple Pecan Granola Ingredients

For breakfast, we love serving this granola with non dairy milk or yoghurt.

Maple Pecan Granola

It is also delicious layered with yoghurt and berries in a parfait (we use frozen berries as they turn the yogurt a beautiful colour as they thaw!)  These can be served as breakfast, dessert or even a post-school snack.

Berry Granola Parfait

Please note that the recipe below has been updated in 2018 to bring it into line with the recipe that appears in the Bit of the Good Stuff cookbook.

Pin for later ⬇️

Last Christmas, I thought I’d treat Lil’ L to some “luxury” shop-bought granola.  I bought two different brands for him, both of which included a selection of his favourite nuts and no dried fruits.  It turns out he didn’t like either of them as they were “way too sugary”!  Instead, he asked whether he could have some of our home-made granola.  Since we’d run out, he was even prepared to postpone his Christmas Day breakfast for 45 minutes until a fresh batch was baked!  I wasn’t expecting to be making granola on Christmas morning but I was happy to oblige. Thank goodness it only takes a few minutes to prepare!  We won’t be buying shop-bought granolas any more.  Home made is best by a long shot!

And if you like chocolate, how about trying our chocolate clusters? Totally scrumptious and perfect for breakfasts, snacks and desserts 🙂

Have a great weekend everyone xx

Do you make your own granolas?  If so, what is your favourite flavour combination? If you have any published recipes, please do link up below.