Homemade almond butter recipe

This homemade almond butter recipe is INSANELY easy, fast and delicious. I make a batch every week and keep it in the fridge to go on my morning bagel (or sometimes just on a spoon directly into my mouth). My homemade almond butter doesn’t separate like most store bought almond butters do. I absolutely love the consistency and I love being in charge of how much salt goes in the recipe. 

With all of the peanut allergies that are around these days, it’s really nice to have an alternative nut butter on hand and this homemade almond butter recipe is perfect for that. My daughter and son both love this homemade almond butter too so it is definitely kid approved! 

I prefer to buy the almonds already roasted just because it’s a nice time saver, but if you can’t find them or prefer to roast them yourself, that’s always a good option too. I also (as always) use all organic ingredients!  You’ll also need a good quality food processor or blender. 


Ingredients:
12-16 oz unsalted roasted almonds 
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 

Method:
Empty almonds into food processor. Turn on and blend for about 4-5 minutes. 
When the almonds reach a consistency that looks like this, turn it off and scrape down the sides with a small spatula. 

Let the food processor run until you reach the desired consistency. It should take about 2-3 minutes. You are looking for it to be completely smooth and it will have a sheen to it. 

Once you reach the consistency you want, add the salt and vanilla and blend for another 10-15 seconds only. DO NOT OVERBLEND with the vanilla added. It will ruin the consistency. 

Give this a try and let me know what you think! It will only take you 10 minutes or less to make. 

Vegan buttercream frosting 

Now that the holidays are over and I’m on a sugar detox, of course I’m dreaming of all the yummy things I ate the past month. These delicious (toddler decorated) Christmas Cookies and this birthday cake come to mind…. as I snack on these baby carrots. I made a vegan buttercream frosting on both that was just divine. 

One of my best friends, a self proclaimed meat eating vegan, has given up dairy and eggs this year to continue breastfeeding her son who has severe food allergies.  We celebrated her baby’s first birthday and had a Toddler Christmas Cookie decorating party in December. And since that sweet little boy is one of my favorite kids on earth, I made sure the toddler cookie party was completely vegan friendly. I wouldn’t have had it any other way, but my friend called me after the party and said she was so incredibly thankful that everything was vegan friendly because there was no other cookie party on earth she could have gone to and not had to worry about what crumbs her 1 year old was finding on the floor.  

For the sugar cookies I used the Minimalist Baker’s sugar cookies recipe and they honestly turned out AMAZING. The binder in them is puréed pumpkin and I was so impressed with how they turned out. 

For both the sugar cookies and the birthday cake, this is the butter cream recipe I used. Earth balance vegan buttery baking sticks worked like a charm and everything tasted delicious. Like so delicious that people didn’t know it was all vegan until we told them. And no one missed the dairy or eggs! Try it out and and let me know what you think. 

Vegan Buttercream Frosting
Easy vegan buttercream frosting that can be used to decorate cakes or cookies.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup softened Earth Balance vegan buttery sticks (leave them out on the counter overnight)
  2. 3 cups powdered sugar
  3. 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  4. 2 tsp vanilla extract
  5. 3 tablespoons rice milk (or any other milk alternative you prefer - almond, coconut, hemp, flax, etc)
Instructions
  1. Beat softened "butter" in your stand mixer at medium speed for 3 or 4 minutes until creamed.
  2. Add the powdered sugar and start the mixer on low speed and then gradually move up to medium speed as it incorporates in.
  3. Once all the sugar is incorporated, turn the mixer off. Add the vanilla, salt and milk in the bowl. Then then the mixer back to medium and beat for 3 minutes.
  4. These measurements have always worked for me, but if your frosting seems too thick, add a little more milk. If it seems too thin, add a little more powdered sugar.
Love Via Food http://loveviafood.com/

Vegan buttercream frosting
Ingredients:

1 cup softened Earth Balance vegan buttery sticks (leave them out on the counter overnight) 

3 cups powdered sugar 

1/4 teaspoon sea salt 

2 tsp vanilla extract 

3 tablespoons rice milk (or any other milk alternative you prefer – almond, coconut, hemp, flax, etc) 
Method:
1. Beat softened “butter” in your stand mixer at medium speed for 3 or 4 minutes until creamed. 

2. Add the powdered sugar and start the mixer on low speed and then gradually move up to medium speed as it incorporates in. 

3. Once all the sugar is incorporated, turn the mixer off. Add the vanilla, salt and milk in the bowl. Then then the mixer back to medium and beat for 3 minutes. 

4. These measurements have always worked for me, but if your frosting seems too thick, add a little more milk. If it seems too thin, add a little more powdered sugar. 

Vegan brownies

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My best friend Maggi has been dairy and egg free for 7 months because she is breastfeeding her son who has severe allergies to both. So while we are not religious vegans, I have been creating a lot of vegan treats for her. These vegan brownies are delicious and so easy and fast to make. They are perfect if you have a last minute invitation and you want to bring something yummy. You basically just need to preheat the oven, spend a couple minutes mixing the ingredients and 20 minutes to bake. Voila – you’re done and have delicious vegan brownies! I also have chosen to make them a little bit healthier with extra virgin olive oil instead of canola or GMO laden vegetable oil. Don’t worry, no one will ever know! 

Give these vegan brownies a try for your vegan and non vegan friends alike and I promise that no one will complain! Let me know how they turn out for you. 
Dry ingredients:


1 1/3 cup organic flour 

1 cup organic sugar 

1/3 cup cocoa powder

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp baking powder 
Wet ingredients:

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil 

1/2 cup water 

1 tsp vanilla extract 
Method:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray a 9 x 9 pan with cooking spray. 

2. Put all your dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and whisk it to combine. 

3. Add your wet ingredients and whisk everything together. 


4. Press your batter down with a spatula to flatten. 


5.Bake for 20 minutes. Let cool completely before cutting. 

Roasted Sweet Potatoes

Have you heard about all the benefits of coconut oil but you just stare at the jar and wonder how the heck you’re supposed to cook with it?  These roasted sweet potatoes are a great “gateway recipe” for you to get your feet wet with coconut oil.  I recommend trying it out now for a weeknight dinner, and if you like it, it is a perfect side dish to add to your Thanksgiving Dinner menu. 

This roasted sweet potatoes recipe is super simple and loaded with superfoods.  I love roasting sweet potatoes in the oven with coconut oil for a little bit of natural sweetness, rosemary for a fragrant woodsy heartiness, and salt and pepper to balance it out and make it savory.  It’s so fun to make something so healthy that tastes delicious and feels decadent.

Ingredients:

5-6 medium or 2-3 large sweet potatoes

1.5 tablespoons organic virgin coconut oil (cold pressed)

1 tablespoon fresh or dried rosemary, chopped

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper

 

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Scoop out 1.5 tablespoons of coconut oil onto your baking sheet.  (I like to cover mine with aluminum foil for easy clean up).  If you’re new to cooking with coconut oil, the weird part about it is that it changes form with the temperature.  In the summer, your coconut oil might be completely liquefied.  In the winter, it might be rock hard!  The good news is that it’s very malleable and you can soften hardened coconut oil in your hands easily.
  3. Peel the sweet potatoes and cut them into pieces somewhere between 1/2-1 inch.  You are going for 2 things here: size uniformity so that they cook evenly and a size that looks pleasant to bite into.
  4. Add your cubed sweet potatoes to the baking sheet.  Sprinkle salt, pepper, and rosemary over them.  I love using rosemary from my garden, but dried rosemary works great too.  Thyme works perfectly here too.  This is where you will get your hands dirty.  If the coconut oil is solidified, work it in your hands for a minute first to soften it.  Toss with your hands to coat all the sweet potatoes completely. Try and get them all in an even layer. 
  5. Roast at 400 degrees for 35-40 minutes.  Halfway through, take them out and turn them with a spatula so that they caramelize evenly.  They are done when you see them start to brown on the outside and the inside is tender.

Do you have any healthy recipes that feel like a cheat? Share them with me in the comments! 

Vegan Pumpkin Bread

Vegan Pumpkin Bread Recipe – Happy fall, y’all!! This recipe is great for those who are avoiding eggs and dairy, but still want to participate in the PUMPKIN-ness of fall!! It is a favorite in our house, and I also love to give this bread as a gift as it holds up really nicely and freezes well.  I sent some in Lyla’s backpack for her preschool teachers, and mailed one to my cousin who is a freshman at Virginia Tech.

The reason I developed this recipe is for my friend Maggi who is breastfeeding, but her son has a severe dairy and egg allergy.  The pumpkin bread recipe that I have made for years had 4 eggs in it, so I wanted to see what happened if I tried flax eggs instead.  You honestly can’t taste a difference.  Maggi also loves chocolate, so that’s the reason for the optional chocolate chips add in!  Just look for the Vegan label on the chocolate chips.  Try this vegan pumpkin bread recipe and let me know what you think!


Vegan Pumpkin Bread
This Vegan Pumpkin Bread recipe is a perfect fall staple for those breastfeeding moms who are avoiding eggs and dairy.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 10 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 1/2 cups organic all purpose flour
  2. 3 cups organic raw granulated sugar (or coconut palm sugar)
  3. 2 tsp baking soda
  4. 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  5. 1 tsp cinnamon
  6. 1 tsp nutmeg
  7. 4 tablespoons flax meal, 1/2 cup water
  8. 2/3 cup water
  9. 1 cup organic canola oil
  10. 1 15 oz can organic pumpkin
  11. 1 cup vegan or dairy free chocolate chips (optional)
Instructions
  1. 1. Preheat oven to 350. Mix flax meal and water in a bowl and set aside for at least 5 minutes. These flax eggs are a perfect substitute for eggs.
  2. 2. Mix all dry ingredients (except chocolate chips) in your mixer.
  3. 3. Add wet ingredients and mix until combined.
  4. 4. If using, add chocolate chips last and mix for 15 seconds.
  5. 5. Pour evenly into 3 bread pans greased with cooking spray.
  6. 6. Bake for 1 hour. Let cool before serving.
Notes
  1. Freezes well! Perfect for those avoiding eggs and dairy.
Love Via Food http://loveviafood.com/
Ingredients:

3 1/2 cups organic all purpose flour

3 cups organic raw granulated sugar (or coconut palm sugar)

2 tsp baking soda

1 1/2 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp nutmeg

4 tablespoons flax meal, 1/2 cup water

2/3 cup water

1 cup organic canola oil

1 15 oz can organic pumpkin

1 cup vegan or dairy free chocolate chips (optional)

Method:

1. Preheat oven to 350. Mix flax meal and water in a bowl and set aside for at least 5 minutes.  These flax eggs are a perfect substitute for eggs.

flax egg
 
2. Mix all dry ingredients (except chocolate chips) in your mixer.


3. Add wet ingredients and mix until combined.


4. If using, add chocolate chips last and mix for 15 seconds. I love this kind when avoiding dairy!

5. Pour evenly into 3 bread pans greased with cooking spray.


6. Bake for 1 hour. Let cool before serving. Freezes well!

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