As the new year approaches, my brain has been brewing up all sorts of new places that I want to take this blog.
For three years, the main focus of this blog has been relationships (which it will always be), but I have other passions, too! One of them is baking, and often, I swap all sorts of ingredients when baking to make the recipe as guilt-free as possible, while still being delicious.
So, don’t be surprised if you see more “Single Girl Recipes” around these parts.
Since the holidays are upon us, I wanted to share a few delicious, yet guilt-free, recipes for you to make for yourself, or share with others.
Cranberry-Pistachio Biscotti (From Self magazine)
OMG. I love biscotti! I made some for the first time this Easter and they are really easy to make; plus they are a delicious breakfast! These biscotti cookies are just 69 calories each, so you can enjoy without a care.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 egg whites
- 1 whole egg
- 3 tablespoons light butter
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds
- 1/3 cup shelled pistachios
- Grated zest of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon anise seeds
- Vegetable oil cooking spray
Heat oven to 350°. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer. Whisk with a fork to mix. Add egg whites, egg and butter; mix on medium until a loose dough forms, about 1 minute. Stir in cranberries, nuts, zest and anise seeds; mix until incorporated, about 15 seconds. Transfer dough to baking sheet. Coat hands with cooking spray; form dough into a long, flat log, about 14 inches long by 4 inches wide. Bake until outside of log is firm and browned, about 25 minutes. Remove from oven; cool 10 minutes. Cut loaf into 1/4-inch-thick slices; arrange on 2 baking sheets, return to oven and bake until lightly toasted, about 12 minutes. Cool. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
Paleo Gingerbread Men (From The Paleo Mom)
While I’m not in LOVE with gingerbread, I love the thought of these completely paleo cookies, plus the fact that you can totally bite their heads off (am I sick?). Eat them plain, or decorate with paleo-friendly items such as gluten-free frosting, dried fruit, gluten-free candy, or paleo chocolate chips. While you’re at it, check out these clever “Ninjabread” cookie cutters!
- 1/2 cup palm shortening
- 1/2 cup molasses
- 2 egg whites
- 3 cups blanched almond flour
- 1/2 cup coconut flour
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp allspice
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp cloves
Preheat oven to 350F. Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix until thoroughly combined (or use a standing mixer). Dough will be very stiff. Let the dough sit for 20 minutes (room temperature is okay) before rolling out. Pour dough onto a rolling mat or piece of parchment paper. Roll out to ¼” thick. Cut with cookie cutters and use a pastry knife or scraper to move cookies onto a cookie sheet (unless you’re lucky enough to have them stick to the inside of the cookie cutter for transferring). Repeat until all your dough is used up. If your dough is being difficult, try chilling it before rolling. If decorating with candies or dried fruit, do so before putting in the oven. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove to a cooling rack as soon as they are out of the oven. If decorating with chocolate chips, do so immediately. If decorating with melted chocolate or frosting wait until they have cooled.
Peppermint Mocha Brownies (From Cocomama Foods)
When Starbucks rolls out their famous red cups each year, I always want to be first in line to get my Venti Peppermint Mocha (or as my best friend Angela calls it, “Christmas in a Cup”). These brownie bites capture that delicious, seasonal flavor, all while being gluten-free, dairy-free, and soy-free!
For the brownies…
- 1 1/4 cup Medjool dates, pitted, soaked, & drained (about 15)
- 1/4 cup water
- 9 tbsp raw cocoa
- 1/4 cup agave syrup
- 1/4 cup coconut oil, soft, not liquid
- 1 can garbanzo beans, drained
- 4 eggs
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 2 tbsp espresso, ground fine
For the icing…
- 1/2 cup coconut milk beverage (So Delicious, or other milk alternative)
- 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp coconut oil
- 1/4 cup cashews, soaked (2 hours is ideal)
- 3 Medjool dates, pitted
- 2 tbsp agave
- 3/4 peppermint oil
For the brownies, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Blend dates and ¼ water on high until it becomes a paste. Add eggs, cocoa, agave, coconut oil, baking powder, cinnamon and espresso; blend until smooth. Add garbanzo beans; mix on high until entire mixture is well incorporated, thick and smooth. Evenly distribute mixture into mini muffin tins (fills 30-32). Bake for 10-12 minutes (until it passes the toothpick test); remove and cool on a wire rack.
For the icing, place all ingredients into a blender. Mix on high until well incorporated; may need to stop a couple of times and stir to promote even blending. Place icing in fridge to chill and firm. Once brownie bites are completely cool, ice each once and garnish with pieces of fresh mint leaves. Store in fridge.