Happy What I Ate Wednesday! I’m super excited that I actually have a healthy Halloween treat recipe to share with everyone. Unfortunately I forgot to take photos of what I ate this past week but hopefully the recipe will make up for it.
Also in case you missed yesterday’s post, I started a small series on “8 Healthy Foods with “Secret” Unhealthy Ingredients.” You’d be shocked at what I found while grocery shopping last week.
And Part 2.
Anyway, first I wanted to share a bit of a fail. I always like posting recipes that didn’t work because I think it shows that every kitchen experience is a learning experience. Sometimes things will burn, taste awful or have you running to the bathroom. No one is perfect so you just have to laugh it off 🙂
Spagetti squash was on sale for $.99 cents/lb so I immediately ran out to get one. Jake and I really enjoy it as an alternative to regular spagetti. Cut your squash in half, lightly cover it in olive oil, season liberally with salt and pepper and pop it into a 350 degree (F) oven for 30 minutes. Be careful when it comes out because it will be hot, but if you rake a fork along the inside of it, you will magically have spagetti!
So why the fail? Well our favorite sauce for spagetti squash involves lots of butter and heavy cream (hence why it’s our favorite). But with the Whole30, both are out. So I thought why not try to make it out of coconut cream instead? I heated up the coconut cream on the stove for about 10 minutes, then added a little bit of chicken broth and pureed roasted red peppers. Sounds great right?
Eh. It looks OK but the sauce was way too thin, not the creaminess that I had envisioned And the flavors weren’t really there. It was just sort of coconut-ish.
But I decided to try again a few days later.
There was a winner. Not exactly a creamy sauce, more traditional spagetti and meatballs. I made the spagetti squash the exact same way. Then cooked some grass-fed beef on the stove. I covered it all not in spagetti sauce, but in the homemade paleo BBQ sauce I made a while back. I loved the spiciness of it. Will definitely be making it again.
OK so now on to the recipe. On Saturday Jake and I went to a friend’s house out in the suburbs for a BBQ. I knew this time around to always come prepared with Whole30 compliant foods. So when I saw a recipe for sugar-free, dairy-free, grain-free muffins, I knew I wanted to try them. I’ve made them twice now with a few different variations but I think I figured out how I like them best.
Banana Pumpkin Muffins (sugar-free, grain-free and dairy-free)
Adapted from Balanced Bites
About 1/2 cup pumpkin puree (I used canned)
1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 T pumpkin pie spice
A bit of sea salt
Optional: few handfuls of walnuts
Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees (F). In a bowl, mash your banana with a fork as best you can. I ended up also using a spatula to help with the mushing process. Then add your eggs and beat the mixture together. I recommend using a mixer (I just have a hand-held one). Add your melted coconut oil, pumpkin puree, and vanilla. Beat for a minute more until it’s all mixed together.
In a measuring cup, mix your dry ingredients together: the coconut flour, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice and sea salt. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet, mixing for a few minutes. Then fold in any walnuts if you’re using them. I made half with and half without.
Now the first time I made these, I used regular sized muffin cups. The second time I got the jumbo size and I really think they’re much better. Also the first time I experimented with adding carrots and using less pumpkin puree like in the original recipe. Jake liked the carrots, I did not. And I liked adding more pumpkin puree to it because I think it makes a creamier texture.
Anyway, take about 1/4 cup of the mixture and roll into a ball. Place a ball in each muffin tin. I did this because the first time around they were super lumpy. I realized that these don’t rise. So however you put them in is how they’re going to come out. If you want pretty muffins, roll them.
Put in the oven for 35 minutes. And you’re done. I’ve been enjoying them for breakfast most of this week 🙂