No-Bake Oatmeal Cookie Bars

This Valentine’s Day, give the one you love something made with love! These bars are so simple and delicious, bae will be wanting them year-round.

For a more elegant look, roll 1 Tablespoon of dough into a ball, dip in melted chocolate and top with sprinkles!

 

Yield: 12-14 bars

Ingredients:

1/2 cup ground flaxseed

1/2 cup water

1/3 cup peanut butter (sub: almond butter, cashew butter, sunflower seed butter)

1/2 cup maple syrup (sub: honey or agave)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

2 cups oats

1/2 cup coconut flakes, unsweetened

1/3 cup chocolate chips (I like dark chocolate)

Sprinkles!! (optional, but so cute)

 

Directions:

  1. In a medium bowl, mix ground flaxseed and water. This should resemble an egg-like consistency.
  2. Mix in peanut butter, maple syrup, vanilla, salt, and cinnamon until fully combined. If this mix is very thick, thin with 1-2 Tablespoons of water.
  3. Sprinkle in the oats and coconut and carefully mix until a dough forms.
  4. Press the dough evenly into an 8×8 pan and freeze for 15 minutes.
  5. While the bars solidify, melt the chocolate chips.
  6. Once the bars are done, spread the chocolate over the bars and top with sprinkles!
  7. Freeze for 15 minutes before cutting into squares!

 

Store bars in the fridge/ freezer.

Banana Bread x 2

I’m a chocolate chip banana bread girl through & through, but when I mentioned blueberries and walnuts my mom went crazy… hence the x 2 for this recipe. The base of the banana bread is delicious on its own or feel free to mix in your favorite extras.

Some mix-in ideas: chocolate chips, fresh blueberries + walnuts, frozen cherries + pistachios, almonds, nutella, peanut butter (I could go on forever, I mean was doesn’t go well with banana bread??).

Base Banana Bread Recipe (adapted from Giada De Laurentiis Banana Bread Recipe)

Yield: 1 loaf

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup olive oil

2 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 ripe bananas, mashed

Add-ins : 1 cup each (for blueberry walnut- 1 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen), 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped)

 

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and spray a loaf pan with non-stick spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, salt, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  3. In a separate bowl combine the sugar, oil, eggs, vanilla and bananas.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until just combined (do not over mix).
  5. Fold in extras until evenly incorporated into the batter.
  6. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan and bake for 1 hour or until a cake tester comes out clean.
  7. Cool for 1 hour before slicing!

Orange Pistachio Cinnamon Rolls

While this recipe may not seem “healthbyhayl approved,” I’m making an exception because these babies are DELICIOUS and life is all about balance. These sweet rolls are filled with warm cinnamon, brown sugar and butta so they are sure to please your sweet tooth (and they’re made with whole wheat flour so they’re kinda healthyish).

If you aren’t a fan of the orange glaze or pistachios, feel free to add whatever flavor combo you like! Go classic or add almonds, lemon zest, and even raisins.

Here’s what I did:

Adapted from Ambitious Kitchen

Yield: about 12-14 rolls

Ingredients:

For the dough:

3/4 cup milk (heated to 110-115 degrees F)

2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast (or one packet)

1/2 cup sugar

2 eggs

1/4 butter, melted

2 cups whole wheat flour

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

 

For the filling:

3/4 cup brown sugar

2 Tablespoons ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 cup butter, softened

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup pistachios, chopped

 

For the icing:

1 cup powdered sugar

1 teaspoon orange zest

2 Tablespoons orange juice

 

Directions:

  1. Add the warm milk to the bowl of an electric mixer and sprinkle the yeast over the top.
  2. Let sit for 5 minutes or until yeast is foamy.
  3. Add in sugar, eggs, and butter, mixing to combine.
  4. Next, stir in flours and salt, mixing on low until a dough begins to form.
  5. Knead dough with dough hook attachment for 8-10 minutes or until the ball of dough comes away from the bowl.
  6. Cover the dough and let it rise for 1 hour or until it has doubled in size.
  7. Transfer the dough to a floured surface and roll into a large rectangle.
  8. In a small bowl, mix the filling ingredients until well combined.
  9. Spread the mixture evenly over the dough.
  10. Tightly roll the dough up until a long log forms.
  11. Cut into 1 inch pieces and place into a sprayed pie dish. Cover these babies in a towel and let them rise for 30 minutes.
  12. Bake at 350 F for 25-30 minutes or until the edges are slightly golden.
  13. To make the frosting: mix all ingredients in a small bowl until smooth. If too thick, add more orange juice and if too thin, add more powdered sugar.
  14. Pour the glaze over the buns and top with extra chopped pistachios!

Vegan Spiced Apple Cheesecake Bars

These vegan, gluten-free and refined sugar free bars are a process, but well worth it! Sweetened with maple syrup these are a healthier alternative to regular cheesecake. Ingredients like cashews and almond butter give these bars their rich consistency without the guilt!

Yield: 9 (2″ X 2″) bars

Ingredients:

Crust-

½ cup dates, pitted and chopped

1 cup oats

¼ cup ground flaxseed

1 Tablespoon coconut oil

1 Tablespoon maple syrup

½ teaspoon cinnamon

Sprinkle of salt

 

Filling-

1 ½ cup raw cashews, soaked overnight in water (then drain)

2 scoops collagen peptides (optional)

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 Tablespoons coconut oil

¼ cup maple syrup

¼ cup almond butter

Sprinkle of salt

 

Topping-

1 teaspoon butter

1 apple (any kind), diced

¼ cup apple cider

 

Directions:

  1. Line an 8 in X 8 in square baking pan with parchment paper or foil.

Crust-

  • Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until a dough begins to form.
  • Once combined, evenly press the mixture into the baking pan and set aside.

Filling-

  • Place all ingredients in a blender and blend for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Once the mixture is smooth, evenly spread over the crust.

Topping-

  • In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.
  • Add the apples and cider and cook for 5-10 minutes on medium-low heat until apples are softened and start to caramelize.
  • Leave the apples to cool for 10 minutes before evenly pouring over the filling.

Freeze the bars for 1 hour before cutting!

Chocolate Chip Zucchini Breakfast Cookies

With autumn soon arriving, I love to stock my freezers with fresh baked goods, veggies and fruits. Keeping these vegetables frozen until winter ensures you have summer-fresh food all year long! As much as I’d LOVE to eat sautéed zucchini for every meal, I think people would be more receptive to something sweet!

These muffins pack a punch of flavor as well as nutrients: fiber, veggie power and a hint of sweetness make them the perfect grab-and-go breakfast!

Here’s what I did with my leftover zucchinis:

 

Yield: 16-18 cookies

Ingredients

1 medium zucchini, shredded

2 cups oats

1 cup flour (whole wheat is best, but AP is fine)

½ cup ground flaxseed (optional)

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

¼ cup (4 TBs) butter, melted & cooled (sub: coconut/olive oil)

1 large ripe banana, mashed

1/3 cup honey (sub: agave, maple syrup)

1 egg

2 teaspoons vanilla

½ cup dark chocolate chunks (I cut up a dark chocolate bar, regular chips are fine)

 

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place zucchini in a large bowl and sprinkle with salt, sit for 10 minutes. Press the zucchini and drain excess water.
  2. In a separate bowl whisk together the vanilla, egg, honey, butter, banana, cinnamon, baking powder and baking soda.
  3. Add the zucchini and stir until combined.
  4. Stir in the flour, oats and chocolate, mixing until just combined.
  5. Place two tablespoons of the mixture on a greased baking sheet and bake for 15-18 minutes or until just browned.

Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days or freeze for midnights snacks!

Honey Almond Butter Cups

I know everyone has their theories on how to reduce sugar cravings, but when I want something sweet it’s not going away until I’m satisfied. These dark chocolate babies are filled with healthy fats, natural sugars and are the perfect way to ease those late night cravings while staying on track (because seriously who can live without dessert, like really though).

For this recipe I’ve added collagen peptides- I’ll get into these more in a later post- and they are completely optional, please don’t go out and buy them just for this recipe. This amino acid powder from Further Food (my favorite brand, but there are many out there) is unflavored, unsweetened and dissolve in hot or cold mixtures.

For those interested- Collagen Benefits: great for gut health, keeping bones & joints strong, reducing inflammation and bloating, great source of protein.

 

Honey Almond Butter Cups

Yield: 6 cups

1/3 cup chopped dark chocolate pieces (I use an 85% dark chocolate bar from Aldi)

1 teaspoon coconut oil

1/3 cup almond butter (sub: peanut, sunflower, cashew, macadamia)

1 sprinkle of cinnamon

1 Tablespoon honey (sub: maple syrup, agave)

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

2 scoops collagen peptides (optional- these add an extra protein boost)

Sea salt for garnishing (optional)

 

Directions:

  1. In a microwave safe bowl, place the chocolate and coconut oil. In 30-second increments, melt the mixture, stirring between each time. Set aside.
  2. In a small bowl combine the almond butter, cinnamon, honey, vanilla and collagen. Stir until fully incorporated.
  3. Line a mini cupcake pan with 6 paper liners. Take ½ teaspoon of the chocolate mixture and place it in the bottom of the liner. Carefully spread the chocolate on the sides of the liner, coating it halfway up the paper to create the shell. Repeat for the other 5 liners.
  4. Place the whole pan in the freezer for about 5 minutes or until the chocolate has set.
  5. Once the chocolate has hardened, place 1 heaping teaspoon of the almond butter mixture into each cup and spread evenly.
  6. Next, place another ½ teaspoon of the chocolate mixture on top of each cup, covering the almond butter completely.
  7. Sprinkle each cup with sea salt (optional) and then place in the freezer for 5-10 minutes or until the chocolate is firm.

 

Keep these cups in the refrigerator or freezer so they don’t melt! These can be kept for 3-4 weeks.