Gluten & Dairy Free PB&J Oat Muffins with Homemade Chia Seed Jam

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PB&J is probably one of the most nostalgic foods for me.  Whenever I am stressed, had a long day or really just want something to remind me of home I make a PB&J sandwich.  For a long time I did not allow myself to have a PB&J sandwich for the fear of it making me gain weight which was totaly irrational thinking but it happened.  Sinced I have stopped restricting my diet and living a balanced life I have had plenty of time to eat me some PB&J.  My favorite combo you ask…crunchy peanut butter with strawberry jam on white bread.  It is perfect.

Anyways!  Pretty  much every morning I eat some variation of oatmeal because it is delicious, it keeps me full for a long time and filled with healthy carbs and fats but the other day I wanted to switch it up so I made these muffins.  They are great because they are gluten and dairy free, made with whole real ingredients, easy to take on the go for a fast breakfast or snack and most important are DELICIOUS!  Now, if you do not need to be gluten free you can use regular oats no big deal.  The jam for these can be adapated and made with any fruit you wants.  It is low in sugar and full of healthy fats from the chia seeds.

Anyway you look at it, it’s a win win with these muffins!

Inspired by Ambitious Kitchen 

Gluten & Dairy Free PB&J Oat Muffins with Homemade Chia Seed Jam

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Makes 12 muffins

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons melted and cooled coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 TBS honey
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups almond milk (regular milk too if you can tolerate dairy)
  • 1 1/2 cups gluten free oats (or regular oats)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 homemade jam

Mixed Berry Chia Seed Jam

Makes 1/4 cup but can easily be doubled or tripled

Ingredients:

  • 1 cups fresh blueberries
  • 1/2 TBS maple syrup or honey
  • 1.2  TBS chia seeds
  • 1/8 tsp pure vanilla extract
  1. In a medium pot bring berries and maple syrup to a boil.  Lower the heat and let it continue to cook for about 4 minutes stirring often.
  2. Mash the berry mixture with a fork or potato masher.
  3. Stir in the chia seeds until fully combined and let cook on low for about 10 minutes stirring often.
  4. Once thick, remove from heat and add vanilla.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE MUFFINS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Place muffin liners in the pan and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, mix coconut oil, peanut butter, honey, egg and almond milk.
  4. Mix together until well combined and smooth.
  5. Add in oats, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.
  6. Pour 1 TBS of batter into each muffin liner, add more batter if there are leftovers at the end.
  7. Add jam by teaspoonful onto the top off each muffin and swirl around gently.
  8. Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden brown.  You do not want to let these go too long because they will be dry.
  9. Once baked immediatley remove from muffin tin and place on a wire rack to cool.

You can freeze these muffins and defrost or keep in the fridge for about a week.

Bon appétit!

Browned Butter Reese’s Pieces Cookies…AHHHHH!!!!

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A couple of months ago I tried something that changed the way I look at butter forever.  Sounds a bit weird I know, but it is true.  I was testing out a recipe from Ambitious Kitchen (who is amazing by the way) for Nutella Stuffed Browned Butter Brownies and the recipe obviously called for browned butter.  I had never made it before and had only heard about it on the Food Network so I was not aware of the way it can change a simple brownie or cookie batter from delicious to absolutely to die for!  After I mixed the browned butter into the sugar mixture for the brownies the smell was intoxicating.  It was nutty, butter, sugary and over all increvable smelling (and tasting, because obviously I had to taste it).  Since that day any opportunity I have to make a recipe with browned butter I do.  It takes what you are baking to a whole other level and it is 100% worth the small amount of extra effort it takes.

So today when I decided to make cookies with the Reese’s Pieces candies David and I got from Bulk Barn (the greatest store ever) the other day I knew they would be perfect with browned butter #happydance.  These cookies are great because they are easy, have very few ingredients and you can make them with chocolate chips instead if you want.  I adapted the recipe for these cookies from here.

Do everyone a favor and get your butt in the kitchen and make these chewy, nutty, peanut buttery cookies!

BROWNED BUTTER REESE’S PIECES COOKIES
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Makes 16 cookies
Ingredents
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 2 teaspoons molasses
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1 2/3 cups all purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup Reese’s Pieces or chocolat chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375F
  2. Place butter in medium sauce pan over medium high heat and DO NOT STEP AWAY.  Continue to whisk the butter until it begins to foam and give off a nutty smell.  You will start to see little brown bits on the bottom of the pan.  It will take about 5 minutes.  Be sure to keep an eye on it or it will burn and become burnt butter which is no bueno.  Once browned, remove from stove and let cool.
  3. While butter is cooling, mix brown sugar, coconut sugar and egg until smooth.  Add molasses and vanilla and whisk again until fully combined.
  4. Once fully combined add flour, baking soda and salt and mix well and dough can form a ball.  Fold in your Reese’s or chocolate chips until evenly distributed.
  5. Roll dough into 1 TBS balls and place on a large baking sheet approximately 2 inches apart.
  6. Bake for 8-11 minutes or until edges begin to turn slightly golden brown.
  7. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for about 2 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Do NOT throw those bananas away!

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Do you have old bananas? Are they brown, spotty and soft? Do you sometimes throw them away or stick them in the freezer to make smoothies? Have you ever made banana bread with those bananas? If not, I need you to stop whatever you are doing right now and go get some bananas. Let them sit for a few days until the reach the status spoken about above and then make this or any other banana bread.

Now, banana bread is great because it obviously tastes delicious, it’s super easy to make AND you can eat it for breakfast! One of my favorite sweet food combos has to be banana, peanut butter and chocolate. Honestly, there has not been a better trio since the Three Stooges. So when David pointed out to me yesterday that we had some bananas that were really ready to be made better I decided I would transform them into a Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bread.

This banana bread is layered for beauty and full of amazing flavor for enjoyment.

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bread

Ingredients

1 ¾ cup all-purpose flour
½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
¼ cup of softened butter
¾ cup of brown sugar
3 medium very ripe bananas, mashed
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup of milk
¼ cup of vanilla yogourt
1/2 cup of Reese’s Peanut Butter spread (you could use nutella or regular peanut butter too

Instructions

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. and grease a 9-inch loaf pan.

-In a medium bowl mix flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt together and set aside.

-In another bowl mix butter, sugar, and mashed banana together until creamy.

-Add vanilla and eggs and beat until well combined.

-Add flour, yogurt and milk until fully combined.

-Remove 1/2 a cup of batter and place in a seperate bowl. Add 1/2 cup of peanut butter spread and mix until fully combined.

-Pour 1/2 of plain batter into the loaf pan and spread out evenly. Pour peanut butter batter on top and spread evenly. Top with remaining plain batter and spread even. You should have three layers of batter that will look amazing once baked!

-Bake for 55-65 minutes, or until golden brown and toothpick comes out almost clean in center.

-Cool for 10 minutes in pan and then transfer to a wire rack. Cool COMPLETLY before cutting or it will fall apart.

This banana bread is dense, moist and incredibly delish!

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Gingerbread Muffins & Sweet Lemon Glaze

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I really hate cupcakes. I know it’s weird but they are always just way too sweet and I have never been a huge fan of frosting. I remember as a kid going to birthday parties and being totally bummed when they had anything other than an ice-cream cake. I guess I really just don’t like frosting but cupcakes become guilty by association.  On the other hand, cupcakes have a super delicious cousin named muffin and I love muffins.  Muffins are the kind of thing you can eat for breakfast, as an afternoon snack or as dessert.  They are definitley multi-purpose and come in SO many different varieties.

After I made the molasses cookies the other day I had a lot of extra molasses and pretty much nothing to do with it.  I Googled molasses recipes and came across a ton of different ones until I found a combo two different recipes that I decided I would combine.  The first recipe was for Gingerbread Muffins from How Sweet Eats and the second was for a Lemon Glaze from Sally’s Baking Addiction.  Molasses is not the main focus of the muffins but it is used in them and it gives the muffins a chewy texture that is seriously addicting.   The lemon glaze on these muffins is totally optional but highly recommended.  It offers a great balance between the gingery-molassesness of the muffin and the sweet citrusy taste of the glaze (those are all totally technical terms).

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Even BB ate them 🙂

Ingredients:

For the muffins:

Makes 12-16 muffins

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
2/3 cup loosely packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup molasses
1/3 cup maple syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
2/3 cup milk

For the glaze:

1 cup powdered sugar

juice from 1 lemon

1-2 Tablespoons milk

Mix all ingredients in a bowl until fully combined and smooth.

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin tin with liners or spray with cooking spray.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, ginger, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and cloves. You can the nutmeg, ginger and clive for 2 tsp of allspice.
  3. In a larger bowl, whisk together the brown sugar and egg until combinded. Then whisk in the molasses, maple syrup and vanilla extract.
  4. Whisk in the melted butter until fully combined.
  5. Stir in the dry ingredients until just combined – do not overmix!
  6. Stir in the milk before the dry ingredients are fully combined.
  7. Fill muffin culs 3/4 of the way full with batter.
  8. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until fully set and no jiggly.
  9. Move to cooling rack to cool completly before glazing.
  10. Once cool, spoon the glaze over each muffin.  It can get messy!

 

Easiest Chewy Molasses Cookies Ever!

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I LOVE COOKIES!  Almost nothing beats a chewy, crispy, warm cookie especially after a long day.  One of my favorite parts of baking cookies is the smell that it leaves in the house.  That intoxicating smell of vanilla, chocolate, sugar and spice filling your home for you to enjoy even before the cookies are done.  I mean they even make candles after that smell, it’s obviously amazing.  Now I love pretty much every kind of cookie, even oatmeal raisin, but my favorite kind of cookies are the spiced kind.  The ones that warm my soul and fill my belly.  The ones that remind me of Christmas and Thanksgiving, being with family and friends.

Being in Montreal I am away from all of my family and sometimes I get a little homesick so yesterday I decided to make a cookie that would make me feel like I was with my family.  It is so incredible how a certain food can make you feel closer to your family when you are so far away.

This recipe is so super easy, fast and incredibly delicious.  I literally whipped them together in between cooking dinner and helping David get the baby to bed.  Something really amazing doesn’t always have to be complicated.  I found this recipe on Dessert For Two blog and what I loved about it was it was simple, quick and can easily be doubled.  I was really happy how the cookies came out and if you are looking for something that is seriously delicious with no-fuss these are the cookies your looking for.

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Ingredients

Makes 12 cookies

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground all spice
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 3 tablespoons molasses (not blackstrap)
  • ¼ cup coasse sugar (I used brown sugar and it worked find)

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, spices, and salt.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together the melted butter and brown sugar until fully incorporated.  It might take a minute so be patient.
  3. Add the egg yolk and molasses, and stir until combined.
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix until fully combined
  5. Cover and chill the dough for about 15 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375F.
  7. Pour the brown course sugar in a bowl
  8. Scoop out 12 balls of dough, and roll each ball in the sanding sugar generously.
  9. Space 2″ apart on a baking sheet, and bake for 8-9 minutes, until puffy and starting to crack.
  10. Transfer to a wire wrack to cool.

Once the cookies have cooled ENJOY!

Pizza and beer. Has there ever been a more perfect match?

FullSizeRenderPizza. Oh glorious pizza. It encompasses the 3 Cs in the most perfect way. Crispy, Chewy and Cheesy. Making pizza crust is absolutley worth every ounce of effort it takes, and honestly it is not that hard. I found the recipe for this pizza crust on an awesome blog I just discovered called Displaced Housewive. Her blog is funny and her recipes are dope.

This pizza crust in particular is great because it is made with beer. I mean…how much more do you want? Pizza + Beer = Perfection. The crust comes out cripsy and is able to withstand a fair amount of toppings.

I recommend not going too heavy handed on the sauce and toppings though because it will over power this great vessle for which the toppings are upon.

For my pizza we used our favorite pizza sauce, pepperoni, peppers, onion and mushrooms but feel free to use whatever toppings you want but like I said respect the dough. The dough can be made into two big pizzas or 4 small ones and can be made vegan by using maple sypup instead of honey.

Best way to enjoy this pizza is with a beer and a buddy!

Without further ado…here you dough!

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Beer Pizza Crust

Ingredients

1 12-ounce bottle of warm beer. I know, warm beer sounds like a sin but it needs to be warm to activate the yeast. Place it in a bowl of warm water for about 30 minutes to get it to the right temp.

2 packages dry yeast

2 TBS honey or maple syrup

3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for the bowl.

4 cups of all purpose white flour

3 TSP of salt

Cornmeal for dusting underneath the dough, pre-oven or BBQ

Whatever toppings and sauce you want! Get crazy!

Instructions

Place the beer, yeast, honey or maple syrup and olive oil in a bowl. Mix and let the yeast activate for about 10 minutes until it is nice and frothy like a delicious cold beer.

Once foamy add 3 cups of your flour and salt and begin to knead the dough. Now, this takes a little work and you might break a sweat but hey, if you are eating pizza you might as well sweat a little right. Knead the dough for about 8 minutes until the dough is no longer sticky. You might need to add more flour as you need. Add about 1/4 cup at a time and do not add more than 1 cup of additonal flour.

Once the dough has come together into a small, stretchy little ball add a splash of olive oil to a seperate bowl and place dough in said bowl for rising. Cover the bowl with a towel, grab a beer (you deserve it) and let the dough rise and rest for an hour. If you live in a cold place you can put the bowl in the oven (not on) to let it get warmer. The dough should about double in size.

Now grab a baking sheet, cover with parchment paper, sprinkle it with flour. Seperate your dough into either 2 or 4 equal sized balls and place them on the baking sheet. I said it before, baking take patience, and these babies have to rest again for another hour. I promise the wait is worth it! Cover them back up with the same towel it let them rest.

When the hour is up, all of your hard work is ready to be made into pizza. Preheat your oven to 500F and get ready to assemble, like the Transformers.

Grab one dough ball and hand stretch it to the desired size. You do not want to pull it too thin or it will not hold your toppings. Place your dough ball on a baking sheet dusted with corn meal, no parchement paper, to keep from sticking. It also gives a another element of crunch.

Add your toppings and remember less is more when it comes to sauce. Place the pizzas in the oven for 12-15 minutes. Make sure to check your oven at the 12 minute mark since it is set so hot. You don’t want to burn this crust.

Let the pizza cool for a couple of minutes so you don’t burn your mouth and then enjoy, with a beer, obviously.

Kylo Ren Approved Peanut Butter Stuffed Browned Butter Sugar Cookies

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A long time ago in a galaxy far far away…

Well actually, today in this galaxy but whatever, I made these cookies inspired by Ambitious Kitchen’s recipe for Browned Butter Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies. Before reading her blog I had no idea what browned butter was or how amazing it is. I mean, it is kind of life changing when used the right way. You can take a simple chocolate chip cookie and turn it into this rich, nutty, chewy over the top cookie. Does it take a little bit more work? Yes, obviously, but it is totally worth it!

The great things about these cookies is that you can change and adapt them pretty easily. If you know the basic cookie recipe you can stuff them with peanut butter (like I did), nutella, almond butter etc. depending on what you like. You can add chocolate chips or peanut butter chips to the cookie batter too, I just didn’t have any at home. The options are endless and if you have any questions about substitutions or anything else feel free to comment!

P.S. If Kylo Ren approves they are obviously good cookies.

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Peanut Butter Stuffed Brown Butter Sugar Cookies a.k.a. Heaven

Ingredients

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 cup chocolate chips (optional)
15 teaspoons of any nut butter or Nutella chilled

Instructions

1. First, you have to brown the butter. If you have never done this just make sure to give your whole attention to the process. Add butter to a saucepan over medium heat. As the butter melts it will foam and make cracking noises. Be sure to continuously whisk to prevent burning. After a few minutes the butter will begin to turn brown and give off a nutty smell. Once this happens remove from the heat and transfer to a bowl to cool about 5 minutes (DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP).

2. Once cool mix butter and sugars until combined and then add in egg and vanilla until fully combined.

3. In a seperate bowl (I usually do this while my butter is cooling) mix together flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Slowly start to add your flour mixture to the butter, sugar and egg until combined. At this point fold in chocolate chips if using.

4. Now time to be patient. Cover dough with plastic wrap and let chill 20 minutes in the freezer or 45 minutes in the fridge.

5. After dough is chilled preheat oven to 350F and measure about 1 tablespoon of dough and roll into a ball. Using your thumb press a hole in the center of the ball for the nut butter or nutella.

6. Place about 1 teaspoon of nut butter or nutella in the cookie hole and fold and roll dough to cover it completely. Be sure the center is fully covered and if not add a bit more dough. Roll the dough into a ball again and then flatten slightly with palms.

7. Continue for the rest of the dough and place on a baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake for 12-13 mintues or until golden brown.

8. Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet about 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling and then ENJOY.

My batch made 13 cookies but you can probably squeeze about 15 out of the dough.