Healthy Chocolate Smoothie & A Giveaway!

Healthy Chocolate Smoothie

One of my favourite ways to pack nutrition into my day, and into my son’s little body, is by making nutritional, filling, and tasty smoothies.  I love starting my day with them, or having a little pick me up in the afternoon.  My son also loves making them with me, and no matter how many times he has helped, he always jumps when the blender starts going!   Also, there’s no denying I am a chocoholic, so wherever I can sneak it in, in a healthy way, I go for it.

This is one of my favourite recent smoothie creations incorporating dark, rich cocoa with oats, dates, and refreshing almond milk.  I am a huge fan of homemade almond milk, but, like most of you, I have days where there simply aren’t enough hours to possibly make some.  When I’m looking for convenience and whipping up a quick breakfast or snack, I use Almond Fresh in my smoothies or granola.  Their milk is certified non-GMO and vegan, and I have a soft spot for the fact that they are a Canadian business.  The kind people over at Almond Fresh sent me coupons to give away to one of my readers.  I encourage you to leave a comment below and I will randomly select one person to send $20 worth of vouchers to!  If you just happened to stop by here, follow my blog and you will be entered twice!  (Yay for free stuff!).

I will announce the winner here on Friday, October 25th.

So, here is my smoothie recipe.

Healthy Chocolate Smoothie

Makes 1 large smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 banana
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1 teaspoon organic pure cocoa powder
  • 2 medjool dates, chopped
  • 1/2 cup ice
  • cacao nibs and oats (optional) as topping

Directions:

  • Place almond milk, banana, oats, dates, cocoa powder and ice into blender and blend.
  • Pour into mason jar (everything tastes better in a mason jar, doesn’t it?) and top with cacao nibs and oats.
  • Enjoy!

Healthy Chocolate Smoothie

I also follow Almond Fresh on Facebook and also saw that they are giving away a huge prize – A KitchenAid prize pack valued at over $2000 + a year’s worth of Almond Fresh.  My husband bought me a KitchenAid mixer for Christmas a few years back, it was one of the best things that ever happened to me and my kitchen! If you’re feeling lucky, I would totally go over and give it a shot!  Contest ends soon (November 1st).  All you need to do is choose your favourite Almond Fresh refreshing drink and share it with your friends on Facebook!   By clicking on the photo below, it will bring you directly to the contest page.

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You’re all so creative and inspiring with your recipes, I have faith in you. 🙂  Even if you don’t win the grand prize, you still have chances to win DAILY prizes, and you’re allowed to enter 5 times per day, so your chances just got better.

I’m really looking forward to my first giveaway, so let’s get chatting!  Although the vouchers are only valid in Canada – I would love to hear from all of you.  I’d like to know, what is your favourite and most used smoothie ingredient?

Healthy Chocolate Smoothie

(Although this post was sponsored, all recipes, smoothie photos and opinions expressed are my own.  I pinky swear.)

Really, Really Easy Chocolate Mousse

As the title says, it simply doesn’t get easier than this recipe and let me tell you, it is a silky, smooth, decadent chocolate mousse.  It’s the chocolate mousse you would expect, made with not so typical ingredients.  No eggs, no heavy cream, no white sugar.  Instead, think high protein, dreamy chocolate dessert.  I hope you give this one a try, it’s too easy not to!

Really, Really Easy Chocolate Mousse Recipe

Makes 3-4 small servings

Ingredients:

  • 375 grams silken tofu
  • 3/4 cup dairy-free dark chocolate chips
  • 1 tablespoon cacao powder

Directions:

  • In a food processor, whiz the tofu until it is a smooth consistency.
  • Melt chocolate chips and add to the tofu, along with the cacao.  Give it another whirl.
  • Spoon into dessert bowls and chill in fridge for 1-2 hours.
  • Top with a few berries and enjoy!

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Raspberry + White Chocolate Scones

When I was a student a hundred years ago, my diet consisted of coffee and my favourite coffee shops’ addictive scones.  I absolutely loved the tartness of the raspberries combined with the hidden surprises of white chocolate chunks.  I’ve been meaning to recreate them for years, and finally got around to it last week.  My homemade version is a healthier version inspired by those scones in my college days and also from Babycakes cookbook.

Raspberry + White Chocolate Scones

Makes 8 scones

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups kamut flour (or spelt, or whole wheat)
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup sunflower oil, plus more for brushing
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup agave nectar, plus more for brushing
  • 1/4 cup hot water
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries, washed
  • 1/4 cup vegan white chocolate drops

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together.  Add the oil, agave nectar, and vanilla and stir together.
  • Pour the hot water into the batter and mix.
  • Gently fold in the raspberries and white chocolate drops.

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  • Scoop 1/3 cup batter onto the baking sheet, spacing the scoops 1 inch apart to allow them to spread.  Lightly brush the tops with oil.

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  • Bake the scones for 20 minutes rotating the sheet half way through.  If needed, bake for a little longer until they are golden and slightly firm.
  • Remove from oven and brush with agave nectar.
  • Allow to cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes, remove and let cool completely on a wire rack.
  • Can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2-3 days on the counter.
  • Enjoy!

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Vegan Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

These are by far our favourite muffins in our house.  My son always helps make them, so there’s extra love that goes into these every time.  We made a batch tonight, so I thought I’d reblog this old post, because I think you, like us, will love these!

Vegan Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

I always say the best part of vegan baking is that you can go ahead and lick that spoon!

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Chocolatey Buckwheat Pancakes

I hope everyone is having a fabulous weekend. We had a lazy start to the day, as we celebrated our five year anniversary last night at a delicious Syrian restaurant, Damas, in Montreal. The flavours of each dish were out of this world. Combinations of grilled, smoky vegetables, nuts, pomegranate seeds, cumin, and pomegranate molasses were the highlights of some of the dishes we tried. Paired with delicious Lebanese wine, we were on cloud nine.

Back to the pancakes. Weekends are for pancakes, am I right? Actually, to be honest, our family loves to go out for breakfast on the weekends, but today it was just me and my boy so I opted for a stack of pancakes to share. I love buckwheat crepes and pancakes, so I decided to make them chocolatey to make them a little more appealing to the little guy. Being Canadian, these must be topped with pure maple syrup for the overall taste experience. The pancakes themselves are not sweet, so the maple syrup adds a nice, sweet touch!

Chocolatey Buckwheat Pancakes Recipe

Makes 8-10 pancakes

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup buckwheat flour
  • 3/4 cup all purpose or kamut or spelt flour
  • 3 tablespoons organic cacao powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 tablespoons melted vegan butter
  • 2 cups vegan buttermilk (2 cups non dairy milk + 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar)
  • coconut oil for coating the pan

Directions

  • Start heating your non-stick pan over medium heat.
  • Prepare your ‘buttermilk’. Pour 2 cups of non dairy milk (I used almond milk) plus 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar into a measuring cup or bowl. Let sit while you prepare the rest.

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  • Whisk all the dry ingredients in a large bowl.

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  • Pour melted butter into bowl. Stir.
  • Add the buttermilk slowly. Stir to combine without over mixing.

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  • Put a small amount of coconut oil onto the pan and spread it around to coat evenly. Bring heat down to medium-low.
  • Using a ladle, pour batter onto the hot pan.

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  • Cook on one side for 2-3 minutes. You will see small bubbles forming.
  • Gently flip pancakes and cook for about 1 more minute.

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  • Place on a plate and cover with a towel to keep warm as you cook the remaining pancakes.
  • Serve warm with vegan butter and maple syrup.

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A shot of the flowers my hubby got me yesterday. They smell so lovely!

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