Cookbook Celebration (reader submitted images)!!

I’ve gotten SUCH AMAZING FEEDBACK on my cookbook from you guys!! #1 best seller on Amazon in a day! It makes me so happy to hear that you guys are loving the hard work I poured into the book. I get even happier to see pictures of yummy deliciousnessssss.

Check out these posts that some awesome readers have tagged me in! – Then check out their accounts. :3

If you tag me on Instagram/twitter/whatever I’ll add your picture to this collection and link back to your account!

Peanut Butter Crunch Brownies || posted by Tam LC

Carrot Cake Bread || posted by Em Dunc on Instagram and Youtube

Carrot Cake Bread || posted by Catherine L. on Instagram

Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake || posted by Samantha L. on Instagram

No Bake Whipped Peanut Butter Pie || posted by Dena H on Instagram

Peanut Butter Stuffed Pumpkin Cookies || posted by Sarah on Instagram

Carrot Cake Bread || posted by Julianna on Instagram

Carrot Cake Bread || posted by Em Dunc on Instagram

Learn the best sugar free, gluten free, dairy free recipes under 300 calories.

Choosing the Best Vegan Protein Powder

I found this awesome article that I wanted to share. As I have been transitioning from whey protein to plant-based options, I’ve been trying various forms of protein powder such as pea protein, rice protein, and mixtures that some brands have such as Nuzest, Vega One, etc. This article by Naked Nutrition breaks each kind down & explains everything really well, so I hope it helps. :)

In the world of protein powders, there are tons of options. Surprisingly, things get even more complicated when you start looking specifically at vegan protein powders. As it turns out, many plants are good sources of quality proteins so, with all the choices out there, you’re faced with a tough question: Which is the best vegan protein powder for you?

Allergies and Side Effects

Several plants that are commonly used for protein, like soy, can be pretty potent allergens despite their nutritional reputation. If you have any food allergies, then, you would clearly want to avoid those products.

It’s also important to remember that protein powders aren’t always all about protein; yhey often contain other compounds that typically go ignored. These substances, despite their relative anonymity, can have powerful impacts on your health – for both good and bad. If we continue discussing soy, for example, you may be uncomfortable with the concerns over the phytoestrogens found in the plant that have been linked to various cancers and developmental problems.

Other phytochemicals in vegan protein powders may also have unique interactions for you if you’re on any medications or are otherwise dealing with a health condition. When deciding on the best vegan protein powder for you, you will need to consider these facts.

What Do You Need?

Assuming that you do not have any major concerns over the health impacts of the particular protein powder, the other consideration would be your nutritional needs and how you hope to use the product.

Some vegan protein powders have incomplete amino acid profiles and would need to be completed by other protein sources. If you plan on using the powder as your main protein source, these incomplete options would not fit your nutritional needs. For those who have an otherwise balanced diet, though, the completeness or incompleteness of a protein powder wouldn’t really be a large concern.

Then there’s flavor to think about. Some vegan protein powders – like pea protein – have fairly distinct flavors that may or may not be something you enjoy. If you like to get adventurous and cook with your protein powders instead of just tossing them into shakes, you’ll also want to think about the flavor and how that particular powder reactions with other ingredients. Rice protein powder, for example, is excellent for baking because it tends to hold on to liquids and helps create moist cakes and breads.

Finally, price is always a necessary factor. Certain vegan protein powders are difficult to harvest and process, which tends to hike up the prices. Hemp protein, for instance, is generally one of the most expensive options because of the association between it and marijuana – which limits how and where the plant can be grown.

Ultimately, deciding which option is the best vegan protein powder for you is a very personal decision based on your individual needs.

[ article posted with permission from Naked Nutrition ]

Learn the best sugar free, gluten free, dairy free recipes under 300 calories.

All eyes on…

It’s that time again!! Recipes I’m drooling over this week.

[ via ]

these savory curry granola bars. savory bars whaaaat?!

this slow cooker saag. slow cookers<3.

these sunflower seed protein balls. prettyyyyy.

this low carb cake batter spread sandwich. what the actual heck.

this wonderfully creamy kabocha squash mash. because kabocha.

this thai lentil vegan meatloaf. with an apricot glaze?! i’m done.

this honey soy tofu. mmmmm.

this vegan pear pumpkin gingerbread loaf. much comfort.

these chocolate chip coconut freezer pies. so cute!

this beautiful roasted butternut squash salad. simple and omg.

this baked pear, chocolate, hazelnut oatmeal. ahhh the flavors!!

these vegan thanksgiving wraps. dreamyyyy.

[ this is everything I currently have my eyes on. leave any links you’re currently loving, below! ] 

Learn the best sugar free, gluten free, dairy free recipes under 300 calories.

Ginger Pear Blondies (vegan, gluten free)

I’m so excited for the holidays! For some reason, holiday times make me more excited to get creative in the kitchen. Something about the flavors and smells of holiday baking is just so much more enticing. Is it just me? Probably. I saw that Bai is having a virtual holiday party – sharing holiday recipes – and I wanted to get in on the fun!


I’ve done some baking with Bai 5 before, and it’s always so goooood. It’s kinda magical. First of all, the entire bottle of Bai is 10 calories. It’s antioxidant infused, naturally sweetened, and no artificial colors or preservatives. I like to get low cal flavored drinks sometimes (like zero cal poweraid, flavored water, etc to not get bored of plain water) but they always make my tummy hurt D; I love this drink because it makes me feel so gooooood. And I swear it’s like…nectar straight from the Gods. I honestly have no idea how they get so much flavor into it.


Pear flavor is the BEST (okay maybe coconut too, idk… tough call) so I went with pear to make ginger pear blondies!! Looooove the flavor it ended up having #flavorlife!! Sweet, yet earthy from the ginger and spices. One thing I’d say is – they’re not gooey/thick like I anticipated. These have more of a cake/cookie texture to them. Delicious nonetheless, but I’m going to be working with this recipe again in the future to create a dense, thick recipe I’m hoping to get. Try these out, and let me know what you think about it!! Holidays <3


Ginger Pear Blondies (vegan, gluten free) 
Serves: 8
  • 3/4 cup oat flour (ground up raw oats – 60 g)
  • 3/4 cup baking stevia
  • 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup almond butter
  • 1/3 cup congo pear flavor bai 5
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup diced pear

Preheat the oven to 350 F. In a bowl, mix the dry ingredients (oat flour, baking stevia, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, ginger, and cinnamon). Then add the wet ingredients (almond butter, pear Bai 5, and vanilla extract). Mix until everything is evenly inncorporated, creating a thick batter. Lastly, fold in the diced pear pieces. Spray a 4×9 baking dish (9×9 would be fine) with nonstick spray; spread your batter into the dish, creating an even layer. Bake at 350 F for 16-20 minutes. Remove from the oven, let cool 5 minutes, slice into 8 pieces, and enjoy!!

Nutrition info for one serving: 147 calories; 10 g fat, 11 g carbs (3 g fiber), and 6 g protein


Learn the best sugar free, gluten free, dairy free recipes under 300 calories.

Kabocha Lentil Curry (vegan, gluten free)

MMM yes. Lentils. My new best friend.
I swear that every time I used to make lentils when I first started eating healthy, they always sucked so much. They ended up firm and tasting like dirt every time. But now they’re delicious? I don’t know what changed, but I won’t question it! They’re so filling and can add bulk and protein to a meal easy peasy.

I saw this original recipe on Pinch of Yum and just about drooled in my own lap when I saw it. Kabocha? Curry? Sign me uppppp. This was so easy to make and SMELLS SO GOOD. I actually ran out of lentils mid-way through and had to run to the store to get more. When I went to open the front door, the entire area around the house emitted yummy yummy curry smells. So much comfort.


This Wednesday/Thursday I was supposed to go on a trip with Andrew and his friend Andrew (fun, huh?) to some hot springs in Montana! We were going to take the dogs (mine and the friend’s dog) too, hike up in snowy mountains, then enjoy the hot springs. Buutttt.. the conditions were a bit rougher than we assumed and we didn’t want to risk it. Plus, since I’m new to the northwest, I don’t really have hiking gear or boots? So. I basically would’ve died. Basically. Anyways – instead, we went about 1.5 hours out to go rock climbing with a brief hike to the area. We still got to take the dogs and have fun. :) I loved it. It was the first time I trusted Pesto off the leash, and he did great! His little body couldn’t handle the 50F weather though, even with his sweater on D; But it was so so relaxing and much needed.

And now we’re back! Always feels good to be home. I’ve been binging on American Horror Story. I never watched it before, but decided to give it a go. And yes. So much yes. I skipped season 3 but I’m already on season 5, ha. Who let me go so long without AHS in my life?!

Kabocha Lentil Curry (vegan, gluten free)

Serves: 8

Adapted from Pinch of Yum

  • 1.5 cups dry brown lentils
  • 4-5 cups peeled, cubed kabocha squash (1 lb total)
  • 1 large yellow onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 TBSP olive oil
  • 2 cups vegetable broth (or water)
  • 1 TBSP curry paste
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (for mild-medium spice)
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup canned coconut milk
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (1.75 cups total)
  • rice/quinoa for serving

Boil a pot of water. Rinse your dry lentils and add them to the boiling water. Let boil for 20-30 minutes until the lentils are tender (but not overly boiled & mushy!). Strain the lentils from the water and allow to dry.

In a large skillet over medium heat, heat your olive oil. Add the chopped onion and sautee until lightly browned. Add the cubed raw squash and vegetable broth – if the liquid level does not completely cover the squash, add more broth or water to cover. Let simmer for 10 minutes or until the squash is soft. Transfer the cooked mixture to a food processor and blend until smooth. Return the blended mixture to the pan and add the curry paste, curry powder, cumin, salt, cayenne, cinnamon, and coconut milk. Mix together until smooth and creamy. I used green curry paste, but any curry paste you prefer is fine! A red curry paste would be great.

Add the previously cooked lentils and diced tomatoes. Let everything simmer together for 10 more minutes and serve over rice or quinoa. I served mine with a 1:1 mix of white rice and quinoa, but I bet this would be great with just rice. I topped mine with some dairy-free sour cream, but more coconut milk or dairy-free yogurt would be fantastic.


For a low fat version, the olive oil could be swapped for nonstick spray, and the coconut milk could be omitted.

Nutrition info for one serving: 150 calories; 4 g fat, 30 g carbs (13 g fiber), and 8 g protein

I usually transfer the full cooked recipe to a tupperware to measure the weight, then divide portions based on weight. For example, this yielded approx 1600 g for me – so each serving would be 200 g worth.

Learn the best sugar free, gluten free, dairy free recipes under 300 calories.

Marble Cake (vegan, gluten free)

Hey guys! This was such a fun recipe to create! I recently came across Gretchen’s Bakery – she’s been baking over 20 years and shares crazy awesome dessert recipes like these Mint Chocolate Chip Brownie Cookies. My problem issss… they’re the traditional style desserts (sugar, dairy, eggs, etc)! It got me thinking – I can healthify some of this!! After speaking with her, she mentioned that some of her readers were really interested in egg-free recipes. I’m like – me me me I can do that for you!! I never realized how many people have egg allergies or can’t have eggs until my recent venture into vegan eating!


Soo I went through one of her ebooks (The Bakery Days) and found a gorgeous Marble Bundt Cake to healthify. It’s easy when you have a base recipe to make healthy substitutions! I am sooo satisfied with how it turned out!!!! When I taste-tested it, I immediately went back for a second slice O_O even though I told myself just one. That happens more than I want to admit shhhh.


This cake is light & sweet in the vanilla sections, yet soo dense & fudgey in the chocolate portion. I love that it’s a swirl of the two flavors. Gives you the best of both worlds. :) Make this and let me know which flavor is your favorite!! I reeeally can’t decide.

For more awesome desserts, check out Gretchen and her ebooks! There’s 4 different books to choose from.

Marble Cake (vegan, gluten free)
Serves: 8

  • 1 cup buckwheat flour
  • 1 cup oat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup baking stevia
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
  • 4 flax eggs (1/4 cup ground flax seeds + 3/4 cup warm water)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup baking stevia

Preheat the oven to 350 F. In a medium bowl, mix all of your dry ingredients (buckwheat flour, oat flour, baking powder, salt, stevia). Once even, mix in the wet ingredients (applesauce, coconut oil, flax eggs, and vanilla). Stir well. Remove approximately half of the batter to another mixing bowl.

In a small bowl combine the cocoa powder, water, and stevia, and whisk until smooth. Add the cocoa paste to one half of the vanilla batter and mix to a smooth chocolate batter.

Pour the vanilla batter into a cake pan sprayed with nonstick spray. Then add the chocolate batter in large spoons full all around the top of the vanilla batter. Swirl the two batters together with a small knife in a random pattern. Bake at 350°F for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven, let cool 10 minutes, cut into 8 slices, and enjoy!

Serve as is or – I iced mine with a vanilla protein icing (1/4 cup dairy free cream cheese, 1 scoop plant-based Nuzest protein, stevia, and water) and chopped up Square Bars!

Nutritional info for one serving (before icing): 180 calories; 10g fat, 23 g carbs (6 g fiber), and 4 g protein


Learn the best sugar free, gluten free, dairy free recipes under 300 calories.