Banana Maple Buckwheat Granola

When I think of the best adjectives to describe myself, “domestic” never really rises to the top of the list.  In fact, I’m not sure if it’s ever made the cut to be anywhere on the list.  Maybe it’s because I’ve never … Continue reading

Spring-Ready Smoothie Bowl

Procrastination.

Heard of it? Yes.

Experienced it? Yes.

Regretted it? Yes.

Learned your lesson for next time? No.

Unfortunately, this relentless noun is pretty much the only excuse I can offer for why I haven’t blogged in four months. That, and the fact that the plastic blue dishes in my apartment don’t exactly scream “photograph me.” For some reason, amidst my cost-conscious dishware shopping, I didn’t think to consider the Instagram-worthiness of my purchases.

However, there’s good news. I decided to procrastinate procrastinating (think about that) AND I recently saved enough money to buy a $4.99 ceramic bowl from Target that’s much more photogenic than its plastic cabinet-mates. So, I am now ready for my comeback post.

When I was trying to decide what recipe to feature, I considered a few different options:

A paleo pizza? Those buckwheat pancakes that I can’t stop (and won’t stop) posting on social media? The delicious smoothie bowl that I’ve been making for dinner after my work-outs? Then I remembered that I hadn’t yet found the funds to purchase the matching ceramic plate at Target, so my selection was quickly narrowed to recipes requiring bowls… thus my choice was easy.

BOWL-OF-PALEO-PIZZA.

Just kidding… even though I am now very intrigued by the idea of a pizza bowl. Maybe next post.

Until then, I bring you my new dinner staple. The green smoothie bowl.

Benefits of eating a smoothie out of a bowl instead of drinking from the glass? For one, it lasts longer. I can’t tell you how many times I have made a smoothie, poured it into a glass, sat down, chugged it, stood up, and shamelessly opened the refrigerator. Eating a smoothie out of a bowl with a spoon forces you to slow down and you feel like you’re eating a real meal (which you are). Second, pouring a smoothie in a bowl allows you to sprinkle on an infinite amount of toppings. These toppings not only make the smoothie 10 times more awesome and pretty, but they also give you that satisfying crunch that you need. Granola, nuts, seeds, fruit, cacao nibs, coconut… the possibilities are endless. So without further ado…

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Green Smoothie Bowl:

  • 2 Big Handfuls of Leafy Greens (Kale/Spinach/Romaine/Arugula)
  • 1 Spoonful of Tahini (or any Nut Butter)**
  • 1 Scoop of Plant-Based Protein Powder
  • 1 Cup Nut Milk
  • 1 Serving of Fruit (1/2 Frozen Banana, ½ Apple, 1 C Blueberries, 1/2 C Strawberries, etc)
  • Ice, as necessary
  • Toppings: A sprinkling of pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, granola, unsweetened coconut flakes, sliced almonds, cacao nibs, dried fruit, chopped fruit, etc.

** Note: I use Tahini because if I buy a jar of any nut butter, I dive my spoon right into the jar and it’s gone in 3 days.

Now, for those of you shaking your head and beginning to plan what toppings you’re going to get on your burrito bowl for dinner… I urge you to reconsider. Yes, I know people usually prefer something savory and substantial for dinner – like salmon, broccoli, and a sweet potato. Or a hearty salad. Or Chipotle. But think about it – after you eat your savory dinner, how long before you’re craving something sweet for dessert?

Guilty.

With this smoothie bowl, it takes away the craving to indulge in a sugary treat before bedtime, and it also satisfies your craving for something savory when you add a drizzle of nut butter or roasted/salted nuts and seeds (my favorite are pepitas and sunflower seeds).

So, what are you waiting for? Spring has sprung. Bathing suit season is upon us. And let’s be honest, your winter jacket probably isn’t the only thing you’re eager to shed.

Chocolate Pumpkin Chia Breakfast Parfait

This fall I have seen pumpkin-spice lattes, pumpkin-spice butter, pumpkin-spice Pringles, pumpkin-spice vodka, pumpkin-spice shower gel, and now…. I have come up with my own pumpkin-infused creation.  Pumpkin chia breakfast parfait.  Maybe not as ground breaking as pumpkin-spice shower gel, … Continue reading

Extra-Fluffy Gluten Free Waffles

After a very long, and very unnecessary hiatus, I have finally returned to A Smaller Bite. I took a brief Word Press sabbatical while I searched for jobs, moved to a new city, and settled into the dreaded life of … Continue reading

Cinnamon Pecan Granola

This past week I finally reunited with the lovely Jen Fields to start training again! I had desperately missed her immobilizing workouts from junior year and with the craziness of my last semester, I knew I needed all the motivation I could get to make me workout – especially since I conveniently forgot I’ll be in the Bahamas for Spring Break in less than 3 weeks. (When I finally acknowledged this exciting/frightening reality last week, I immediately started and successfully completed another 3-day juice cleanse.) 

While we were training, Jen told me she had recently decided to go Paleo and immediately began to gush about all of the amazing grain-free recipes she had perfected. While I’m not a Paleo, I tend to follow a diet that’s fairly similar to what they recommend (meats, veggies, fruits, nuts) so I was excited to try some of her new favorite dishes…… And once I tried this granola, I was already planning my trip to the grocery store to buy the ingredients before I had even left her apartment.

She posted her own recipe on her new food blog, but I substituted a few of the ingredients – so my version is posted below. 

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Grain-Free Cinnamon Pecan Granola

Ingredients:

  1. Handful of Cashews
  2. Handful of Pecans
  3. 2 Tbsp Chia Seeds
  4. 2 Tbsp Honey
  5. 1-2 Tbsp Almond Butter
  6. Cinnamon to taste
  7. Nutmeg to taste
  8. 1 tsp Vanilla

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Pulse cashews and pecans in food processor a few times just to chop them into smaller pieces – don’t blend for TOO long!
  3. Gradually add the rest of the ingredients while slowly massaging the mixture so that it develops an even consistency and begins to stick together.
  4. You may need to adjust the amount of honey/almond butter depending on how many nuts you use and the type of granola you would like.
  5. Spread mixture evenly across baking sheet covered with parchment paper.
  6. Bake for 10-15 minutes – keep an eye on it so that it doesn’t burn!
  7. Let cool and harden.

I paired the granola with unsweetened almond milk and sprinkled some shredded coconut on top for a post-dinner snack last night and also for breakfast this morning. But because I seem to have demolished this batch in just two servings, I will definitely double the ingredients next time so that it might last longer than a day…

However, if you have any normal amount of self control, you can probably make it last a little longer than I did.

Enjoy!

2 Drinks That Won’t Ruin Your 2014 Resolutions

So it’s almost 2 weeks into the New Year.  You’ve been cooking lightly, exercising daily, and are feeling better than ever. You can definitely keep this up for 50 more weeks – easy.  You laugh in the face of those … Continue reading

No-Bake, 10-Minute Chocolate Heaven

Finals week has unfortunately, and quite abruptly, arrived.  All of a sudden, your life consists of hot Starbucks, carefully crafted Pandora playlists, comfy leggings and sweatshirts, elaborate Google Doc study guides, never-before-opened textbooks and… an empty refrigerator.

You finished the last of your groceries a few days ago and vehemently refuse to brave the grocery store for a restock. You will being heading home in less than a week – why waste the time? You’ll just eat out for the next six days.

Except, a tiny problem presents itself. Your refrigerator isn’t the only thing that college sucked dry. A brief peek at your desolate bank account reminds you about that pre-finals, de-stress shopping spree you gladly took part in. And that pre-finals de-stress happy hour adventure…. Uh oh.

Now you’re peering into the dark abyss that is your pantry shelf, surveying the unfortunate meal options you have to choose from. A slimy, black banana that you obviously forgot to eat, some mini boxes of raisins, a bag of mixed nuts, and… vanilla powder? ‘Why did I even buy vanilla powder?’

You get a little more stressed, quickly yearning for a decadent dessert to ease the tension.

Well, my friend. YOU are in luck. In just ten minutes, you can indulge in this nutritious, yet exceptionally delicious dessert that miraculously only requires your pitiful pantry leftovers… (plus a few extra add-ins). It’s vegan, raw, gluten-free, and finals-ready.

Chocolate Caramel Delight

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I would choose to eat this treat over a traditional piece of chocolate cake any and every day. I made it twice within a single week and plan to continue this trend over winter break. It’s roommate-approved and family-approved, meaning it tastes like the real thing.

So go ahead and whip this up as a post-finals reward or a pre-final energizer. It’s easy!

Nutty Pumpkin Breakfast Cookies

Now that the weather is changing and Halloween is right around the corner, more and more sweets keep popping up in my house. So naturally, I have been having less and less willpower to say no not only to sweets, but also crackers, pizza, and chipotle.  And even though the season of over-sized sweaters and leggings has replaced crop tops and jean shorts, I am not willing to give up on my healthy eating grind all together just because I don’t have to worry about putting on a bikini for a few months.

Therefore, I discovered a compromise.  As many people will turn to Halloween candy, pumpkin pie, and double fudge brownies this holiday season, I will shake my head (for the most part) and turn to this healthy alternative. It can be eaten as a breakfast, snack, or dessert!

These cookies, inspired by Kelly Bonnell’s recipe, are gluten-free, contain no refined sugar, and embrace the flavors of fall.

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Nutty Pumpkin Breakfast Cookies 

  • 1 Cup Natural Peanut Butter (I would try almond butter next time)
  • 1 Cup Pureed Pumpkin
  • 1/4 Cup Honey
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 Tbsp Pumpkin Pie Spice (cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg)
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 2 Cups Old Fashioned Oats
  • 1 Cup Dark Chocolate Chips/Cacao Nibs (I chopped up a 70% cocoa chocolate bar)
  • 1/2 Cup Chopped Pecans
  • 1/4 Cup Sunflower Seeds

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Combine all ingredients except nuts, chocolate, and oats into large mixing bowl
  • Slowly stir and add in the rest of the ingredients
  • Grease baking sheets and use large spoon to divide dough onto sheets at desired cookie sizes
  • Note: Cookies do not spread much so you can place them close together
  • Cook for about 15 minutes or until golden brown
  • Enjoy!
    *Makes 20-30 cookies depending on size

I had these cookies for breakfast and dessert today – so make sure to put them in a place where you won’t be tempted to eat one every time you walk by the kitchen. Beat the urge to grab the candy!

The Summer’s Final Chapter

This blog post is a little bit different and a lot more special.  This is because, as I head off to school today, I am finally able to reflect upon the last 3 months, outlining the stress and uncertainties I … Continue reading

The Perfect Paleo Pancakes

This weekend, I finally achieved pancake perfection. Fluffy, heavenly, delightful, pancake perfection.  But before I share the secret recipe with you, I will quickly detail the events leading up to this delicious discovery.

This past week was filled with work, job interviews, school preparation, workouts, and overall stress. But the one thing getting me through it all, was knowing that on Friday night, I could climb into bed and turn off my alarm.  Finally, a morning where I could sleep past 8am – maybe even 9am if I was feeling adventurous. This sleep-in excitement must have gotten the best of me, though, because at 6:45 Saturday morning I found myself lying in bed, wide awake, going over my plans for the rest of the day in my head.  So my hope of a sleep-filled morning was an ultimate fail — but I wasn’t going to allow the rest of the day to be! My early rise quickly led to a beautiful morning hike with my mom at Soldier’s Delight, and a chance to finally prepare the proper breakfast that I had been waiting all summer to make, pancakes. 

I found a pancake recipe in a paleo cookbook that I had checked out from the library (surprise, right?), and decided to give it a try. Although I don’t follow a paleo diet, there are many aspects of the “caveman diet” that I agree with, and I thought that looking over the book would be a great way to find some simple, healthy recipes to cook while at school this semester.  And naturally, the pancake recipe needed to be my first paleo experiment. Since I didn’t have all of the ingredients that the recipe called for, I decided to take a chance and add my own twist to these plain pancakes — and the result was definitely worth it. Also, despite the elaborate alliteration you will discover in the title, this recipe was very simple and only took a total of 15 total minutes in prep and cook-time.

Paleo-Pecan Pancake Perfection

  • 1 cup of almond meal
  • 1/4 cup of flax meal
  • large handful of whole pecans
  • 1 tsp Himalayan salt
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp agave nectar
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

And because my creative juices continued to flow, I added a sauce to drizzle over these awesome cakes…

Peach-Blueberry Sauce

  • 1 peach
  • 1/2 cup of blueberries
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

Instructions:

  1. Combine almond meal, flax meal, salt, baking soda, and pecans in food processor and pulse
  2. Add eggs, vinegar, agave, and coconut oil to mixture in food processor and blend until thoroughly combined
  3. Spread spoonful of coconut oil over griddle or stove-top pan on medium heat
  4. Use 1/4 cup of batter for each pancake
  5. Flip ’em
  6. Make Sauce (combine all ingredients in blender)
  7. Plate 2-4 pancakes and drizzle sauce over top!

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I added some shredded coconut, extra blueberries, and peach slices to top off my pancake masterpiece, so feel free to be creative. The recipe makes about 12 good-size pancakes, depending on how big you prefer them. There is also plenty of sauce to save for later that you could drizzle over a parfait or cereal. Or you could just pour it in a glass and drink it like I did this morning.

I am already dubbing this pancake recipe as a staple in my college diet because, for some reason, I feel like pancake brunches on our lazy weekend mornings might be something that my roommates will approve of? Just a guess. I only have one more week until I go back to school, so I need to perfect my cooking skills before then… and I think this was a good start!