Thursday, July 10, 2014

Oatmeal Energy Bars

When I was in college I lived in South Austin and commuted to San Marcos for class. Okay, actually in college I lived all over. Between my parents house in Cedar Creek, my South Austin apartment, and spending a summer house-sitting for a friend's parents I was once called a vagabond!

Specifically, the nine months I lived I South Austin and commuted to San Marcos for class 2-3 days a week, I would grab a breakfast that I could eat in the car. Most of the time this was a whole grab a bagel with some peanut butter. It wasn't a terrible choice, but it left my diet with some nutritional holes.

Baking these bars really reminded me of that time of my life. If I had thought to do a little more food prep back then, maybe I would not have gained the weight that I did!? Having a grab-n-go breakfast is still something I need most mornings, but now I have the nutrition knowledge to make much better choices for my body.

These Oatmeal Energy Bars are full of whole grain, good for you nuts and seeds, plus are sweetened with the tropical flavors of banana and coconut. Keep them wrapped in the fridge for a great in-the-car breakfast, or toast them in a taster oven and pair them with your favorite fruit!

Tell Me: What's your grab-n-go breakfast?

Oatmeal Energy Bars
makes aprx 9 bars

2 Cups Rolled Oats
1 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup mixed nuts/seeds (I used NowFoods Raw Energy Nut Mix)
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 Bananas (overripe and mashed works best)
2 tbs Coconut Oil
1 large egg
1/3 cup shredded coconut
*optional* 1/4 cup coconut water

Preheat oven to 350* and grease an 8x8 baking pan.
In your stand mixer, combine brown sugar, bananas, coconut oil, and egg. Mix on low.
Chop the nut/seed mixture to desired size and add to the mixing bowl. While the mixer is on low, slowly add in the baking powder and the rolled oats a little bit at a time. If the mixture is too dry, add in the coconut water (or water).
When everything is mixed well, pour into the baking pan and spread the batter evenly.
Bake for 15 minutes, allow to cool on the stove top for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
Leftovers need to be wrapped in airtight plastic wrap and kept in the fridge.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Asian Avocado Salad

This recipe was one of the test recipes that my brother-in-law and I cooked up in preparation for the California Avocado Commission's recipe contest. This recipe was not the one I submitted in the end, but it was definitely share-worthy!

The creamy avocado paired well with the crunch of cucumber and carrot, plus there's a hint of garlic under the toasty sesame flavor. Mmmm, makes my mouth water just typing about it!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Berry Cheesecake Pudding Pie

Are you sick of 4th of July recipes yet??

I just had to share this one with y'all because it is super simple, easy to make (kids can totally do this by themselves!), and it is incredibly inexpensive to put together!

Pudding Pie was a staple at my house for the holidays when I was growing up... and now I know why! It's a much healthier alternative, and costs next to nothing. This pudding is low in fat, stocked with calcium, and when you add in fresh berries it's even better.

Ideal for pie-eating contests!

A word of advice: make this the night before and set it in the back of your refrigerator for the night. It'll get super cold and will slice up real nice. Keep this pie COLD before you serve-- not only because it has milk in it, but because if you don't... you'll end up with Berry Cheesecake Goop on your plate instead. It'll still be tasty, though, don't worry!

See? Berry Cheesecake Goop. Yum.

Berry Cheesecake Pudding Pie
1 pie serves 8

1 box Cheesecake flavored instant pudding
1 box Strawberry flavored instant pudding- this may be hard to find, use another box of cheesecake flavored if strawberry is unavailable.
3 cups COLD 2% Milk
1 prepared graham cracker crust- I chose chocolate
Fresh strawberries and blueberry for garnish

In a medium sized bowl, whisk together one box pudding mix and 1.5 cups milk- immediately pour into the graham cracker crust.
Then whisk together the second box of pudding and last 1.5 cups milk- immediately pour into the graham cracker crust on top of the first layer.
The layers will settle separately.
Garnish with your fresh berries and place in the fridge over-night.
Serve COLD.

See!? Easy as PIE!