Any time you venture out to try a new diet or food lifestyle- it is vital to find foods that will make it easy for you to follow that particular lifestyle. These next 30 days should not be a time of deprivation- but rather a time for exploration and health. Will you detox your self from processed foods and sugars? ABSOLUTELY- but that doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy what you make. Making this work will require more prep and planning than what you may be used to- but it will become more and more easy as the days pass.
To get us started though- I feel it necessary to share some of the best Paleo recipes that I have found. Some are paleo hacks- things that replicate foods you might be craving during your 30 day challenge. Others are basic recipes that will help you find creative ways to eat all those veggies. And some will become staples in your home even when you aren’t striving to be the perfect caveman. Today’s focus will be on SWEETS!!!
Sweets are a unique thing when you follow Paleo. You will crave sweet things initially- but as you break away from a processed diet, your sweet tooth will slowly die. That doesn’t mean you cant indulge from time to time- and here are just a couple delicious and easy ways to get your sweet fix on while still eating PALEO!!!
Crockpot Paleo Applesauce:
I love this apple sauce in the morning after a hard workout. It has a delicious taste that is perfect in the morning- warm it up a little and it is almost like fried apples- and the carbs from the apples and honey are perfect post workout!
10 Apples (diced)
2 TBSP Lemon Juice
4 TBSP Raw Honey
2 Cinnamon Sticks
2 tsp Apple Pie Spice
Dice your apples into small pieces and place in the crockpot. Add lemon juice, raw honey and apple pie spice. Toss together with apples to ensure the apple pieces are evenly coated. Place the cinnamon sticks on top. Let cook in crockpot on high for 3 hours. Stir each hour. Cinnamon sticks will work their way to bottom. Fish the cinnamon sticks out when done. Let cool 30 mins to one hour. Refrigerate for up to 7 days.
Berries and Whipped Cream
Need a little something sweet to end your night? Is your sweet tooth getting the best of you? Give this little treat a try! The sweetness of the berries and the fullness of the coconut whipped cream will definitely stop that sweet tooth in it’s tracks!
1 Cup Frozen Berries
1 Can (14.5oz) Coconut Milk
1 teaspoon Vanilla
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
Get your berries out and let them thaw a little- the juices will make this even more delicious. While the berries thaw- place your coconut milk in the fridge. As the coconut milk gets cold- the coconut cream will separate from the coconut water, leaving a rich and delicious solid cream at the top of the can. Scoop out the cream and place in a bowl. Add Vanilla and Cinnamon. With a whisk, whip the cream until fluffy. Add a couple TBSP of the cream to your berries and ENJOY!!
Pumpkin Pie Spiced Nuts
Who wouldn’t like a little sweetness added to their protein snack? Try this delicious variation of your everyday nut mix… it’ll take you to a beautiful and delicious fall day!
2 Cups of Mixed Nuts (Almonds, Cashews, Pistachios)
3 tsp Cinnamon
3 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice (or Apple Pie Spice)
4 TBSP Raw Honey
1 tsp Vanilla
Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil. Place all ingredients in a bowl (minus sea salt) and stir- ensuring that all the nuts are evenly coated. Spread the nuts on the foil evenly- then sprinkle with sea salt. Bake for 18-20 minutes. Let cool before serving.
Killer Banana Bread
Once you try this banana bread- you will never go back to that recipe that Grandma gave you way back when. This banana bread is sweetened all naturally, and with a little pop of dark chocolate- it will literally kill any sweet tooth cravings!!
3 Ripe Bananas
1/2 stick of butter or ghee (grassfeed butter- I recommend Kerrygold!)
3 Large Eggs
1 TBSP Vanilla Extract
1 1/4 C Almond Flour
1/4 C Coconut Flour
1/4 C Arrowroot Starch
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Salt
1 cup Dark Chocolate (62% or higher) Chips or Chunks
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a loaf pan. In a large bowl, mash the bananas, then whisk in butter (melted), eggs and vanilla. In a medium bowl- mix together the dry ingredients. Make sure to blend the flours together well- as coconut flour tends to clump and be dry. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Stir in the chocolate chips. Pour into pan and bake for 55-60 minutes.
Fruity Smoothie or Popsicles
A good smoothie is always a great breakfast option- but add some cold coconut cream- and it can be a rich dessert! Pour it into a popsicle mold and you have a great portable little treat! Oh the options!!! You will need to good blender 🙂
1 Cup Frozen Berries (Strawberries are low glycemic!!)
1/2 Cup Fresh Baby Spinach
1 Cup Almond Milk
** Add a scoop of whey protein mix if you like**
Place all ingredients in the blender, then mix until smooth. If making popsicles, pour the smoothie into the popsicle molds and freeze until solid. For an ice-cream like smoothie- use cold coconut milk (use the solid cream at the top of the can) and blend until smooth.
Dark Chocolate Bark
Have a chocolate craving? A small bite of delicious dark chocolate is A-OK by Paleo. The higher the %, the better- so strive to use a high quality chocolate over 62%. Use a little sea salt to fix that sweet and salty kick!
1 bag Dark Chocolate Chips
1/2 C nuts (pistachios and macadamia are the best!)
1/4 C Reduced Sugar Craisins (50% less Sugar)
1/2 tsp large sea salt
Melt your chocolate on the stove top or in the microwave- slowly, ensuring not to scold it. Stir in the nuts and craisins. Quickly pour the chocolate into a foil/parchment paper lined baking sheet with raised sides. Sprinkle with sea salt. Allow to fully cool and harden.
This is a great start to getting your paleo recipe book together. I will have a number of other posts- including main entrees, snacks, sides and paleo hacks!! Keep your eyes open for the upcoming blogs!!