Tag Archives: gluten free

Sesame Miso Glazed Winter Squash

11 May

I know it probably seems like all I do is make and eat baked goods…(which isn’t far off)… but I do eat regular food every day, too! I eat a lot of vegetables for dinner, I love vegetables.  I often will just whip up a quick stir-fry.. so simple and delicious! And I’ve often thought about doing a post on my daily stir-fry… but it’s so routine, I wouldn’t even know where to begin writing about it… it’s like I’m on auto-pilot. Hmm… maybe one day…

Dinner parties, however, are where I like to test out new recipes (daring, I know).  I came across this one a while back, on one of my favorite food blogs, 101cookbooks.  I knew I had to try it, and I also knew I wanted to make my own modifications (of course..).  It turned out great.  The original recipe calls for just delicata squash, tofu, and the glaze…. I added not only the delicata, but also a satsuma sweet potato, kabocha squash, tofu AND broccoli! Partially, because I wanted to “bulk up” the recipe so I could use it as a hearty main dish, but also because I just loooooove kabocha squash and satsuma sweet potato, I thought they’d go swimmingly in this recipe.  I was right.  The broccoli I added just to “freshen” it up a little, add a little crunch and greenery.  Yum.

Adapted from Heidi Swanson’s Blog, 101cookbooks.


Serves 4-6 people as a main course

  • 1 satsuma sweet potato (another kind would be fine, but these are just so delicious if you can find them)
  • 1 delicata squash
  • 1 kabocha squash
  • 1 (8 oz) package of tofu (cubed, 1/2″ cubes)
  • 1 head of broccoli
  • 4 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 1 teaspoon tamari or soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 heaping tablespoon white or yellow miso
  • juice from 1 whole freshly squeezed orange (don’t be afraid to let some of the pulp fall in)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 1/3 cup water (+/-)
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds


  1. Preheat the oven to 425F.
  2. Peel the sweet potato, but leave the skins on the kabocha and delicata (they’re edible, and pretty!). Cut the two squashes in half and remove the seeds.
  3. Cut them however you’d like… but I cut the sweet potato into cubes, and the squashes into wedges.
  4. In a large bowl, toss the sweet potato and squash with 2 tablespoons of the sesame oil, and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Spread them on a greased baking sheet in a single layer and roast for 40 minutes, turning over with a fork after 20 minutes. Or, until golden on both sides.
  5. In the meantime, in a medium-size bowl, whisk together the molasses, tamari (or soy sauce), maple syrup, miso, orange juice, lemon juice, lemon zest, water, and the remaining 2 tablespoons of sesame oil. Add the tofu, toss to coat, and set aside.
  6. When the squash is deeply golden on both sides, remove from the oven.
  7. Transfer the squash to a cast iron pan (12 inch) on medium heat. Pour the tofu mixture over the squash, and gently toss. Toss in the broccoli. Cook, stirring/flipping often with a spatula, until the marinade boils off and becomes more of a glaze.
  8. Remove from heat, leave in the skillet or transfer to a bowl.  Garnish with some sesame seeds. Serve, and enjoy!

Almondjoys! (vegan, gluten free)

19 Apr

When I was 20, I went to go study in Australia for 8 months.  I was studying and living in Melbourne, which is home of the famous Queen Victoria Farmers Market. INCREDIBLE market. It was so so so fun to go to, and I bought all my produce there.  Including the most amazing raw almonds I’ve ever had.  I love tree nuts. Walnuts and almonds are my favorite, but pistachios, pecans, and peanuts are also amazing.  Anyways, I developed a sort of obsession for these Australian raw almonds….I ate many handfulls a day. Handfulls.  Little did I know, this would lead to me developing a nut intolerance. The HORROR.  I couldn’t eat any nuts anymore or they would make my stomach go wacky…painful wacky.   I was devastated.  After a year went by, I couldn’t take it anymore… I decided I would try to slowly re-introduce my favorite nuts into my diet.  It worked, kind of… I was able to eat walnuts in small portions again.. but not almonds or any other nut.  About another year later, I found out I could eat roasted almonds, but not raw… and still no other nut.  Fast forward to now…. the other day there were some raw almonds hanging around the house leftover from a dish I made (where they were cooked, so it didn’t bother me)… I stared at the bag for a minute, lusting over them, before I decided “screw it!” and grabbed a small handfull to eat. I practically inhaled them. Know what happened next?  A big smile across my face as I enjoyed the soft crunch and deliciousness of the raw almonds… Know what DIDN’T happen next?? My stomach revolting!! That’s right. I was cured!!! (well… I hope…) I was ecstatic, content, and filled with joy.  So much so that I knew I had to celebrate…. and the first thing that came to mind, was to make ALMONDJOYS!!!

no wacky stomach+almonds+coconut+dark chocolate = JOY.

These little treats are not too sweet but plenty sweet enough, so the coconut really shines through.  The rice milk really compliments the coconut well, too.  They are super healthy, have great texture, and taste way better than the brandname.  They were eaten up in minutes, and everyone demanded I make more.  I will… soon.  Seriously, they are incredible.  :)


makes about 20 candies

  • 2 cups shredded coconut (unsweetened. can be dried or fresh)
  • 1/2 cup unflavored rice milk
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil (or coconut butter – either will work, it acts as a binding agent when cool)
  • 1 tbsp agave
  • 20 (+/-) raw almonds
  • about 8 ounces dark chocolate (I used 72%)


  1. Mix coconut and rice milk together in a medium bowl, set aside and let sit for about 5 minutes so coconut softens.
  2. Meanwhile, get out your double boiler… if you dont’ have a double boiler, you can create your own using a metal bowl and a pot. The bowl should partially (not completely) fit into the pot. Fill the pot with enough water so that when the bowl rests in the pot the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl. Bring the water to a simmer (not a boil) and place the bowl in the pot. Add the chocolate to the bowl and stir occasionally until melted.  When fully melted, turn the stove off but leave the chocolate in the bowl sitting over the hot water.
  3. Melt the coconut oil in the microwave, add the melted oil and agave to the rice milk and coconut mixture. Stir well.  The coconut oil will begin to harden when placed in with the cooler milk mixture, but that’s ok.. just start to work the mixture with your hands until fully combined.
  4. Place the mixture into the refrigerator for 10 minutes to help it set. (This is imortant!!)
  5. Line a baking sheet or tray with parchment or wax paper.  Using your hands, take a small handfull of the coconut mixture (about the size of a ping-pong ball), SQUEEZE it TIGHTLY in your fist (some juices will come out, but that’s ok) and then gently form it into a rectangular shape. Repeat.
  6. Gently press an almond into the top of each coconut rectangle (see photos).  Place each coconut rectangle on the parchment paper, and then place the whole tray into the refrigerator for another 5-10 minutes.
  7. After they’ve had time to set, it’s time to coat them in chocolate! This is a little tricky… you have to be VERY gentle.  You can find your own way of doing this, but I placed each one in the chocolate (bottom down), and then used a spoon to drizzle chocolate over the top and used the spoon to gently move the chocolate around until it was fully coated. Then gently scoop the candy out of the melted chocolate and place it back on the parchment paper…. repeat…
  8. When they’ve all been coated, place the tray BACK in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes or until the chocolate is hardened.  Remove from the parchment paper, and enjoy!!! Store them at room temperature or in the refrigerator.

Mini Quinoa Breakfast Muffins (vegan, gluten free)

11 Apr

Easter brunch has become an annual tradition in our family.  It’s awesome, for many reasons.  Mainly, because my family is the coolest family around and because I get to COOK and BAKE up a frenzy! yippee!!!  Honestly, it’s like Thanksgiving’s half birthday to me…. in brunch form.  This year we had a couple friends join us too, and the weather cooperated so we could gather outside to eat.. mmmmm…. love the morning sun.  I got up at 6:30, had my coffee, and started cooking for our 10am brunch.  On the menu were many tasty things including a M’hanncha (Moroccan Snake Cake – I’ll post the recipe for this one soon!), a wild mushroom and leek frittata with a rutabaga parsnip crust; a sundried tomato, spinach, and queso fresco frittata; breakfast potatoes; fruit salad, and mini quinoa muffins.  I always use the excuse of holiday gatherings or food get togethers to try out new recipe ideas… some people call this ballsy or brave, but I just consider it creative and adventurous! I guess I’m pretty confident that my recipes won’t totally fail… but often there’s room for improvement.  ;)

Anyways, for this post I’m going to tell you about these quinoa muffins that I made for brunch.  BITE SIZE quinoa muffins.  Now, I have to warn you… if you are a batter taster… beware.  I could literally eat this batter for breakfast. SO tasty! Actually, really really healthy too, so you really could eat it for breakfast! hmmm….   well either way, if you don’t eat all the batter first, they also make really good muffins.  Super healthy little tidbits, packed with protein! The quinoa taste definitely shines through but the rice milk dulls down its “earthy/nutty” flavor just the right amount to balance these muffins without having to add too much sugar.   Feel free to play around with add-ins… I added mixed dried fruit and walnuts, but just plain raisins or dried apples would be really nice, or whatever else you fancy!  :)

makes about 30 mini muffins
  • 1 cup rolled oats (not instant)
  • 1 cup quinoa (measure dry, will be more when cooked)
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 cup mixed dried fruit (or just your favorite dried fruit or raisins)
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 3 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup unflavored rice milk (coconut, soy or almond would work too, but I like the rice flavor in these)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp coconut butter (softened)
  • 2 flax “eggs” – 2 tbsp flaxseed meal + 6 tbsp water (egg replacer)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Cook 1 cup quinoa in 2 cups water, set aside when all water is absorbed and it’s done cooking.
  3. Mix together flaxseed meal and water, set aside  and mix occasionally (it will become somewhat gelatinous)
  4. In a medium bowl, mix together oats, baking powder, spices, and salt.  Stir in the walnuts and dried fruit.
  5. In a separate bowl, mix together brown sugar, rice milk, vanilla and softened coconut butter.  Stir in the flax “eggs”. Blend until well combined.
  6. Add dry ingredients to wet, and mix until well combined.
  7. Lightly grease a mini muffin tin, and spoon ingredients into prepared tin. (I had to do several batches)
  8. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until each muffin has set (should feel slightly spongy, but bounce back).  Remove from oven and enjoy!!

Piña Colada Scones (vegan, gluten free)

27 Mar

We’ve had quite a few rainy days here in the Bay Area lately, which makes me want to do two things: go on muddy trail runs up in the hills, and bake. I love running in the mud… it’s so soft and squishy.. and best of all, you get super dirty! Frolicking through puddles is my forte. And boy, do I frolic. It’s probably a good thing that not many other people like running in those conditions, because I’m pretty sure I look like a crazy person.  I’m cool with that, though.  Weeeeeeee!! Mud!!!

As for baking, what’s more awesome to come home to than a scone?  I LOVE scones..  they might be my favorite baked good.  Or at least right up there at the top of my favorites.  I don’t like my scones cakey or fluffy… totally the wrong texture for a scone, in my opinion.  I like them rustic and hardy, crumbly but not dry.  And as crucial an ingredient as butter normall is in scones, I prefer (as usual) to bake them without it.  They can still be super tasty without butter, trust me! Butter gives you more of a flakey cakey scone, anyways… so scones without butter are more my texture style.  Plus, I want to be able to eat one with my coffee before breakfast and not feel guilty about it.  This time, I wanted to bake something with coconut, I was craving that tropical taste… Then I remembered I have coconut flour, too!  Super coconutty!  I was trying to decide what to add to these coconut scones.. the first thing that occurred to me was pineapple… I even posted a “poll” to see what my friends thought I should add. The end result though, was pineapple.  Long story short.. these scones evolved in my mind to be vegan and gluten free!  Healthy, delicious, and a great texture. I bring you, Piña Colada Scones!!


makes about 12 scones

  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • 1 cup gluten free oat flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp poppy seeds
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp orange zest
  • 1 tbsp orange juice
  • 5 tbsp agave nectar (or maple syrup)
  • 1 cup diced fresh pineapple


  • 4 tbsp confectioners sugar
  • 1/2 tsp maple syrup or agave
  • 1 tbsp fresh pineapple juice


  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together coconut flour, gluten free oat flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix in poppy seeds and chia seeds.
  3. In a separate medium bowl, combine coconut milk and coconut oil (heat the coconut oil slightly so it’s not solid). Add vanilla extract, agave, orange zest and juice, and pineapple.  Combine gently but thoroughly.
  4. Slowly add the liquid mixture into the flour mixture, and stir until the dough comes together (you might want to use your hands). If the dough is super sticky, add a tiny bit of coconut flour at a time until the dough becomes less sticky.
  5. Form the dough into a ball, then flatten the ball of dough on a cutting board or baking pan with your palms until it is about an inch thick. Use a sharp knife to cut the round into 12 equal pieces.
  6. If you cut them on a cutting board, transfer the scone slices to a lightly greased cookie sheet about an inch apart. Bake for about 15 minutes, until they start to turn slightly golden, and feel firm but still have a slight bounce back to them.
  7. Remove from oven, let cool, and enjoy!!

Baked Oatmeal (vegan & gluten free)

20 Mar
Whenever I say the words “baked oatmeal”, peoples faces seem to turn to a look of curiosity.  This always surprised me… I mean, what’s weird about oatmeal that’s been baked? Maybe it’s just such a common “cooked” breakfast food, that when you replace the word “cooked” with “baked”, it evokes the eyebrow raise.  I have to say though, one of my favorite parts of baking is just that… getting the eyebrow raise out of people :)  That must mean you’ve created something new or interesting! Or, people think it sounds utterly disgusting… pish posh.  Whatever people might think, baked oatmeal is a keeper.  I’ve made it multiple times in multiple ways with multiple ingredients – this one is, so far, my favorite.  With lasting hints of coconut mixed with the familiar flavor of banana and the soft crunch of walnuts, you might find yourself whipping this simple recipe together more often than you imagine.  It’s so simple.  Also, its versatility is another great factor!  Whether it’s for a brunch gathering, a typical morning breakfast, or breakfast-on-the-go for you folk who just like to grab ‘n go… it’ll be a winner!
I like this simple variation quite a bit, but by all means, feel free to experiment and throw in your favorite oatmeal additions!! The whole coconut milk in this recipe is what makes it super delectable in my opinion, so I wouldn’t recommend replacing it with light coconut milk… but of course you can if you want… I’m sure it’ll still be tasty :)  After all, it’s oatmeal, baked!!!
makes about 16, if using a standard size muffin tin
  • 2 cups gluten free rolled oats (not instant)
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 3 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup whole coconut milk (not light, go for the full fat, it’s good-for-you fat!)
  • 3/4 cup almond milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp coconut butter (softened)
  • 1 flax “egg” – 1 tbsp flaxseed meal + 3 tbsp water (egg replacer)
  • 1 or 2 ripe bananas, chopped into about 1/2″ pieces
  • honey to drizzle over the top after baked (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Mix together flaxseed meal and water, set aside  and mix occasionally (it will become somewhat gelatinous)
  3. In a medium bowl, mix together oats, baking powder, spices, and salt.
  4. In a separate bowl, mix together brown sugar, coconut milk (shake the can well before opening!), almond milk, vanilla and softened coconut butter.  Stir in the flax “egg”. Blend until well combined.
  5. Add dry ingredients to wet, and mix until well combined.  Gently stir in the “mix-ins” – bananas, walnuts, and raisins.
  6. Lightly grease a muffin tin, and spoon ingredients into prepared tin.
  7. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until each muffin has set (should feel slightly spongy, but bounce back).  Remove from oven, drizzle with honey if desired, and enjoy!!

Kitchen Sink Cookies

16 Mar

These cookies have no flour in them. None. It’s like magic. They get their name from my quest to find something to put in them (the original recipe called for chocolate chips and nuts). I scoured the kitchen, and came up with about a cup of trail mix – dried cherries, raisins, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, almonds, walnuts, cashews and the occasional hazelnut. Into the batter it went, and the result was delicious.

  • 1 cup almond butter
  • 3/4 cup light or dark brown sugar (I used sucanat)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 C treats of your choices – dried fruit, nuts, chocolate chips, etc.
  1. Preheat oven to 325
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper
  3. In a large bowl, stir almond butter and sugars together until well combined
  4. Add egg, baking soda, honey, vanilla and salt and mix well
  5. Stir in your treats
  6. Using a teaspoon, scoop out small, walnut-sized amounts of dough and roll them in your hands to form a ball
  7. Place on cookie sheet about 1 inch apart
  8. Bake 10 to 12 minutes, until lightly browned (be sure to rotate your pans halfway through baking to ensure even browning)
  9. Cool for 5 minutes

Light and Fluffy Yogurt Pancakes

14 Mar

I am always on the lookout for a new tasty pancake recipe. I love pancakes, and I was striving to find a pancake that was light and fluffy, but not cakey… it’s hard to describe exactly how I want the texture of my pancakes… I guess it’s almost like a fluffy moist soufflé pancake.  I also always try to eat a balanced and healthy breakfast, so any breakfast recipe I try must at least be that.

Last week, I had some leftover ricotta from my peach ricotta soufflé recipe, so I decided to make ricotta pancakes.  Now, ricotta pancakes are certainly delicious.. and light, and fluffy.. but, they are cheese based, and I don’t really want to eat cheese for breakfast. It didn’t fit my “healthy and balanced” requirement.  While I shamelessly admit that I ate them all anyways, it got me thinking… why not do the same recipe but with yogurt instead of ricotta? So I did. And they were sooooo delicious!! I believe that I have almost found that perfect texture I have been looking for!! So for now, these will be my staple. TRY THEM!! I will continue to experiment (as always), and will most likely report back with new pancake recipes. After all, you can never have enough pancake recipes under your belt! :)



makes about 10 pancakes (using 1/4 cup measure, you get about 3″ pancakes)

  • 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup almond milk (soymilk, hemp, rice, coconut would all work great too!)
  • 2 eggs (separated)
  • 1/2 cup flour (I used white whole wheat, but coconut flour or another gluten free flour would work nicely)
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp agave syrup (honey or maple syrup are other options)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Separate eggs, set whites aside.
  2. Combine egg yolks, yogurt, almond milk, agave, and vanilla together in a medium bowl. Blend thoroughly.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients, then add the dry ingredients to the wet and blend until smooth and fully incorporated.
  4. In a small bowl, with clean beaters, beat the egg whites into soft peaks.  Then add the egg whites to the batter and gently fold in until well combined.
  5. Heat and lightly grease the pan, and using a 1/4 cup measure, place a dollop of batter onto the heated pan (or however many you can fit).  Cook and flip like normal pancakes!  Enjoy them with maple syrup, berry compote, or whatever your favorite pancake topping might be.