Back with another of our favorite recipes from our Whole30 challenge. We grilled a lot during our 30 days…like probably 5 days a week. That grill got a workout! We found that chicken breasts were the quickest and easiest option for us with our busy schedule. Pair it with some fresh veggies and you’ve got yourself dinner! The following recipe creates a melt in your mouth chicken and couldn’t be any easier…seriously!
In my second to last post I promised that I’d be posting some great recipes throughout our Whole30. And, look at me now. Two months later and finally getting back at it. I can blame some of it on technical issues with the ol’ blog, but otherwise it’s just been me being lame. ANYWAYS, I’m back with a few recipes that I think you’ll like! While we were doing our W30 I Instagrammed some of our favorite foods and featured a few easy-peasy recipes. I figured they deserved some more attention so I’ll be featuring them here too :) If you’re on Insta and want to follow us there we’re @edwards_eat!
One of my favorite go-to breakfasts towards the end of Whole30 was this SUPER simple Chia Seed Pudding. Holy yum – it is simple, delicious, and oh-so-filling. Towards the end of our 30 days I got to the point of “I can’t make myself eat ONE more scrambled egg!” so I needed to come up with some alternatives. I follow @emilyeatsrealfood on Insta and she always posts the most amazing looking meals. She had been posting chia seed pudding variations and I figured, hey I have a HUGE jar of chia seeds that aren’t going to eat themselves. Why the heck not. And oh boy, it did not disappoint. This recipe is SUPER simple and can be tweaked in a million different ways. Look at the recipe below as a base and adjust to your preference!
First of all, let me apologize for the silence over the last couple of months. One of my goals this year was to post at least once a week and we can all tell that didn’t happen. I don’t have a great reason, other than letting myself get busy and distracted. I can’t promise any huge changes, but my hope is to give this ol’ blog some more attention in the coming months.
So, lets get down to the business of why I’m here right now. Today is the first day of fall! And we all know what that means, right? Pumpkin.
I’ve been impatiently waiting for this day all summer and it’s finally here! The day that I can give in to my obsession of pumpkin infused food and drink and not be scolded for it still being summer. The day that fall wreaths and harvest scented candles are socially acceptable. Ah…a good day indeed.
A couple of years ago, I brought you a recipe for Pumpkin Spice Coffee Syrup. Although that recipe is a good one, I think I may have come up with a new one that is at least 2 times better. For starters, it calls for about 1/2 of the ingredients and is ridiculously easy. Instead of white sugar like the old recipe, I used brown sugar. That was a brilliant idea (if I may say so myself). It has a rich, molasses-y flavor that makes me all warm and fuzzy inside (if brown sugar can do that, and I propose that it can). Enough small talk…here’s the recipe!
UPDATE 6/26/15: Okay, so before you read this recipe, please note that in the past 2 years my understanding of Whole30 has DRASTICALLY improved. I know that the following recipe is not a Whole30 approved option as it is what some people call SWYPO (sex with your pants on). Please proceed forward with the understanding that this recipe is a great one – but not necessarily during a Whole30 challenge. One very important aspect of Whole30 is to get away from paleo-fied foods, such as baked goods, desserts, etc. This recipe is great breakfast option for after your Whole30 if you find that baked goods are not a stumbling block for you. Now, proceed with fair warning :)
We are not dieters. We don’t jump on the bandwagon of fad diets simply because they. don’t. work. Josh and I have however, realized how awful we’ve been at eating well rounded meals and that food may actually have a pretty big impact on our bodies and well being. Duh.
This past week we started the Whole30 Program, which is basically Paleo but with a few more restrictions for 30 days. The key things they tell you to avoid are added sugar, alcohol, grains, legumes, dairy, white potatoes, and preservatives of any kind. The idea of the whole thing is to focus on eating real food – meat, veggies, fruits, eggs, nuts, etc. – and reset your “relationship” with food. I don’t see either Whole30 or Paleo as diets, but rather a lifestyle change. Because I have some auto immune deficiencies, I figured that it could do no harm at all to cut out things that could potentially be causing me more problems (inflammation of my joints, lack of energy, unexplained weight gain, etc.). Although we don’t think we’ll stick with it forever, I doubt that I’ll stray too far from the basics. In the past week, I’ve felt awesome (other than sugar withdrawal headaches). If you’ve never heard of Whole30 or Paleo, I really encourage you to check them out! It is so worth giving it a try, because the worst thing that could happen is that you find you enjoy eating more fruits and veggies!
I’ll do a full recap of what I’ve been eating and will be posting more recipes over the coming weeks, but right now I want to tell you about the banana muffins pictured above. Although some may argue that a few of the ingredients aren’t 100% Whole30 compliant (baking soda & baking powder), I say…pick your battles. I’ve been having a hard time getting a decent breakfast in me before work, so if a wholesome muffin can do the trick I think that’s worth it!
My recipe is inspired by this one. Because I didn’t have cashews or walnut oil, I figured I’d fudge the recipe a little and create my own. (BTW- this gal’s blog has been such a great encouragement to me and has supplied some pretty awesome recipe references! PLUS she’s a young Christian woman who met her husband while working at Camp. Bonus points!)
I have a problem that maybe you can relate to. I love breakfast. But, I love sleep too. Each morning it’s like WWIII trying to figure out which one wins. Typically my love for sleep outweighs my desire to get something nutritious into my body before work. In an effort to fulfill a few of my 2013 Challenges I’ve been slowly working to change this bad habit. I’ve figured out that if I have something reeeaalllyy tasty to wake up to, the Battle of Comfy Bed is more easily won. This recipe comes from my Mama. I’ve tweaked it a little but all glory goes to her for the original idea!
Start off with 2 1/2 cups of rolled oats, 3/4 cup chopped walnuts, 1/2 cup unsalted sunflower seeds, 3/4 cup slivered almonds, 3/4 cup shredded coconut, 1/2 cup dried cranberries and 1/4 cup ground flax seed. You’ll also want to measure out 1/4 cup canola oil and 3/4 cup honey. Microwave the oil and honey for about a 1 1/2 minutes to warm it up.
Mix the oats, walnuts, sunflower seeds, almonds, and coconut in a large bowl.
Pour the oil and honey mixture over your dry ingredients, mix to combine, and then spread out onto two parchment lined sheet pans.
Bake for 20 minutes at 325 degrees – stirring halfway through, until the nuts are toasty and golden brown. Remove from oven and add your dried cranberries and flax seed and gently mix on sheet pan with a spatula.
Let cool completely on the sheet pan and then store in an airtight container. It will stay fresh for at least 2 weeks!
Add a little milk (some almond milk maybe?!), some yogurt, add it to the top of a smoothie, or just eat it plain. Any and all ways are delicious!
Hope you enjoy this simple recipe as much as I do. You can really substitute a million different things. Next time, I think I’ll use maple syrup instead of honey and add some pecans…maybe even add some cinnamon if I’m feeling crazy! Thanks for the great recipe, Mama!
The granola eater,
Serves: 6 cups
2 1/2 cups of rolled oats
3/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup unsalted sunflower seeds
3/4 cup slivered almonds
3/4 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup ground flax seed
1/4 cup canola oil
3/4 cup honey
Mix the oats, walnuts, sunflower seeds, almonds, and coconut in a large bowl.
Combine oil and honey in a microwavable measuring cup or bowl. Microwave for 1 1/2 minutes to warm it up.
Pour the oil and honey mixture over oat mixture to combine, and then spread out onto two parchment lined sheet pans.
Bake for 20 minutes at 325 degrees, until the nuts are toasty and golden brown.
Remove from oven and add your dried cranberries and flax seed and gently mix on sheet pan with a spatula.
Let cool completely on the sheet pan and then store in an airtight container. Will stay fresh for up to 2 weeks.