Peanut Butter Power Breakfast Cookies

I caved today. After years of turning my nose up at all the yoga-pants-wearing, kale-eating, “I only shop at Whole Foods” granola moms who insist on cooking with only organic ingredients, I finally caved. I became one of those Whole Foodies who spends three times as much than she needs to because the recipe calls for almond flour and ground flaxseed. But hey- before you poo-poo me with that look of disdain on your face, let me just say that I did NOT buy the natural peanut butter or pure maple syrup! Some things are just not worth it. But today, I wanted to do this recipe justice, and make it full of as many whole foods (see what I did there?) as possible, since I plan on having these bad boys for a post-workout, pre-breakfast fuel for the next few weeks as I start my new clinical rotation.

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Peanut Butter Power Breakfast Cookies

I prefer to work out in the morning, and my schedule for this upcoming rotation requires me to be at clinic by 7:30, which means that I need to be at the gym by 5:30am if I want to get my full workout in. I’ve been looking for a recipe for a good post-workout snack that I can take with me to clinic, something with a good balance of protein and carbs, that will help me refuel without giving me GI issues or taking the place of a real breakfast (if I eat too big of a snack after a workout, I tend to try to “push back” a real meal and end up not fueling enough!)

Adapted from one of my favorite blogs, fANNEtastic food, these peanut butter power bites are packed with wholesome ingredients including oats, flaxseed, and almond flour. Just under 100 cals a pop, they also have a great balance of carbs, protein, and fat to be enjoyed as a post-workout snack or breakfast on the go! They’re sweet enough to feel like a treat (especially for all of the other athletes out there who tend to crave sugar after your run!), but not so sweet that you feel like you’re eating dessert. You can also freeze these in ziplock snack bags and grab one or two in the morning before you head out the door- they’ll be nice and chewy by the time you’re ready to chow down!

Peanut Butter Power Breakfast Cookies
Recipe Type: Post-Workout, Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine: Healthy, Natural
Author: Claire McCormick of “Claire Tastes”
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 24
Adapted from one of my favorite blogs, fANNEtastic food, these peanut butter power bites are packed with wholesome ingredients including oats, flaxseed, and almond flour. They also have a great balance of carbs, protein, and fat to be enjoyed as a post-workout snack or breakfast on the go! You can also freeze these in ziplock snack bags and grab one or two in the morning before you head out the door- they’ll be nice and chewy by the time you’re ready to chow down!
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 3/4 cup almond flour
  • 3/4 cup ground flaxseed meal
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 heaping teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 heaping tsps vanilla protein powder
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter or other nut butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup (honey would also work!)
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tsp vanilla
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 deg.
  2. In a large bowl, combine all dry ingredients from oats to raisins and stir to blend .
  3. In another smaller bowl, melt peanut butter. Stir in applesauce, maple syrup or honey, almond milk, egg white, and vanilla until combined.
  4. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir to incorporate.
  5. Chill for at least 30 minutes to allow mixture to set.
  6. Line a large baking sheet with a Silpat or spray with cooking spray. When cooled, heap 1 tbsp mounds of mixture about 1″ apart on baking sheet. Bake for 12 minutes at 350 deg.
Serving size: 1 cookie Calories: 93

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Apple Nutter Chia Breakfast Bars

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Apple Nutter Chia Breakfast Bars
Recipe Type: Breakfast, Snack
Author: Claire McCormick of “Claire Tastes”
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 12
An easy breakfast that will fill you up without breaking the calorie bank! Top it with a sliced banana and some almond milk or yogurt for the perfect on-the-go breakfast or snack!
Ingredients
  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce or apple butter
  • 1 small apple, diced
  • handful of raisins and walnuts (or other dried fruit/nuts)
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. In a small bowl, mix oats and milk and set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine all dry ingredients.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and sugar. Add the applesauce/apple butter, oats/milk mixture, and vanilla. Carefully stir in the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
  5. Fold in chopped apple, raisins, nuts, and chia seeds.
  6. In a shallow baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray, spread a thin, even layer of mixture. Melt the peanut butter in the microwave and drizzle over top of mixture (or stir it in if you’d like).
  7. Bake at 375 for 15 minutes or until golden brown and edges are crusty.
  8. Allow to cool, then cut into squares and wrap in parchment paper for a quick and easy breakfast on the go!

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Cheesy Greek Yogurt Deviled Eggs

Who says deviled eggs can’t be angelic? This Christmas, try my Greek yogurt deviled eggs- Greek yogurt is such an easy substitute for mayonnaise and a good way to get in some extra protein to fill you up at that next holiday party! Add a touch of cottage cheese and parmesan to give these just the right amount of creaminess to balance out the tang of the yogurt. Feel free to experiment with your own mix-ins! I happened to have chives on hand, so I figured they’d look pretty on top (besides, with the chives and paprika, these become Christmas-themed!).

Merry Christmas, everyone!

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Cheesy Greek Yogurt Deviled Eggs
Cheesy Greek Yogurt Deviled Eggs
Recipe Type: Appetizer, Side
Cuisine: American
Author: Claire McCormick of “Claire Tastes”
Prep time:
Total time:
Serves: 8-12
Who says you can’t substitute Greek yogurt for ANYTHING? Seriously, ya’ll. It’s like the magic ingredient that I will never, ever, ever get tired of. Here I used Greek yogurt as a sub for the traditional mayonnaise used in deviled eggs. With a touch of cottage cheese and parm, these eggs are cheesy, tangy and a protein powerhouse!
Ingredients
  • 8-10 eggs, hard boiled
  • 1 tbsp spicy brown mustard
  • 1 tbsp whole grain dijon mustard (LOVE my TJ’s brand dijon!)
  • 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup lowfat cottage cheese
  • 2 tbsp parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 tsp dried chives
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • paprika, to taste
Instructions
  1. Place hard boiled eggs on a paper towel and gently tap against countertop to break shell, then press down as you roll it lightly back and forth on the counter. Carefully peel away the outer layer of egg. *Note: It helps to soak the eggs in ice cold water for about 20 min before shelling them- it helps get the shell off in one big piece!
  2. Using a sharp knife, slice each egg lengthwise and pop out the yolk into a medium mixing bowl. Place egg whites on a deviled egg platter or festive plate! (It might also help to put down a pretty paper towel for eggs to rest on to avoid them sliding around!)
  3. To yolks, add mustards, yogurt, cheeses, and chives. Mash with a potato masher until smooth.
  4. Add yolk mixture to a large plastic bag and squeeze down to the bottom. Make your own piping bag by cutting off just one tip!
  5. Carefully squeeze out filling into cavity of each egg, working in a large circle around outline of the cavity and working your way in to fill up the center.
  6. Garnish with extra chives and paprika.

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Sugar n’ Spiced Nuts

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SUGAR N’ SPICED NUTS- circa Christmas 2014
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SUGAR N’ SPICED NUTS- circa Christmas 2013
“Sugar n’ Spice” Glazed Nuts
Recipe Type: Snacks, Holiday
Cuisine: Holiday, Christmas
Author: Claire McCormick of “Claire Tastes”
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: Lots!
Separate these addictive little treats into holiday bags to give as gifts to friends and family, fill up a festive bowl and serve at your next holiday party, or just eat them by the handful right out of the oven!
Ingredients
  • 1 16 oz bag roasted salted almonds
  • 1 16 oz bag cashews
  • 1 12 oz bag pecan halves
  • 1/2 12 oz bag salted peanuts
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1-2 tsp kosher salt (more or less depending on whether your nuts are already salted)
  • 2 heaping tsps ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper (more to taste if you like it hot!)
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • a Pinch of smoked paprika
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 tbsp water
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 300 deg. Generously spray a large baking sheet with cooking spray or use a Silpat (recommended for ease of cleaning).
  2. Mix all sugars and spices in a medium sized bowl until smooth. Make sure there are no lumps by using a whisk!
  3. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites and water until frothy but not forming peaks!
  4. Add all nuts in a large ziplock bag and shake to mix. Pour egg whites on top of nuts, close the top and shake, shake, shake! Nuts will be damp and fragrant.
  5. Little by little, sprinkle the sugar and spice mixture into the nut bag and continue shaking until well incorporated.
  6. Spread nuts in a single layer onto baking sheet. Bake 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes or so. The pan will have syrup in the bottom with each stir, but resist the urge to add more nuts- that syrup is melted brown sugar that will harden right up once the nuts cool!
  7. When finished baking, remove from oven and give one last toss. Cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes, then transfer nuts to a plastic container or bowl to finish cooling. Break apart nuts into pieces if they stick together!
  8. Separate into holiday bags to give as gifts to friends and family, or fill up a festive bowl and serve at your next holiday party! (Or just eat them by the handful right out of the oven- they’re SUPER addictive when they’re warm!)

 

No-Bake Energy “Dump” Bites

Looking for a good way to use up the crumbs in the end of that cereal box? The one that you spent way too much money on because it was all “organic” and fiber-licious? Now you don’t have to let all that good flax go to waste! 😛 Here’s a quick and easy no-bake recipe that you can whip up in minutes! Just dump all these ingredients in a big bowl, stir, chill and form into balls for a perfect on-the-go breakfast, snack or dessert!

PEANUT BUTTER ENERGY DUMP BITES
PEANUT BUTTER ENERGY DUMP BITES
No-Bake Energy “Dump” Bites
Recipe Type: Dessert
Cuisine: Healthy, No-Bake
Author: Claire McCormick of “Claire Tastes”
Prep time:
Total time:
Serves: 16-24
Looking for a good way to use up the crumbs in the end of that cereal box? Here’s a quick and easy no-bake recipe that you can whip up in minutes! Just dump all these ingredients in a big bowl, stir, chill and form into balls for a perfect on-the-go breakfast, snack or dessert!
Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup creamy PB
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup oatmeal
  • 1 cup leftover hearty cereal (I used the leftover crumbs at the bottom of a box of Nature’s Path Flax Plus Pumpkin Raisin Crunch!)
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup raisins
Instructions
  1. In a medium bowl, microwave PB, honey, and vanilla for 30 sec and stir to combine. Add remaining ingredients and stir thoroughly. Feel free to add your own mix-ins like other types of dried fruit/nuts!
  2. Stick in the fridge for at least 30 minutes, then press tightly into balls about 1″ wide. There’s a lot of heft and not a ton of sticking power to this recipe, so make sure to really pack those things tight to avoid them falling apart!
  3. Store in the fridge or freezer and enjoy as an on-the-go breakfast, snack, or dessert!

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Harvest Apple Spice Cake

It’s that time of year where all I want to do is bake. It doesn’t help when we have about a gazillion (times three) apples in our fridge from our annual apple picking trip to Carter Mountain Orchard, just begging to be chopped up, sliced, diced, roasted, baked, pureed, and munched as-is!

This spice cake uses a combination of apples and pears, nestled into a doughy inside. I used plain yogurt and some spiced apple cider from Trader Joe’s to keep the batter moist, then stirred in some juicy raisins with the apples and pears. Topped with chopped nuts and sprinkled with a bit of brown sugar, and this cake becomes breakfast, afternoon snack, OR dessert! I’d also suggest it with a nice big scoop of my favorite vanilla fro-yo!

Note: I used some of these handy little Threshold Oven-safe Paper Loaf Pans that I got at Target. They are the BEST. Especially if you plan on doubling the batch to give a loaf or two away, these are perfect because you can just bake the cake in the pan, let it cool, wrap it up and send it on its way! I first saw these used to display different types of quickbread at a booth at the Durham Farmer’s Market, and the woman selling them told me where she’d gotten them. Best invention ever! They come in the full loaf size as well as a smaller size, and come in packs of 4 ($5.99 for the larger, and $2.99 for the smaller). I got a pack of each!

HARVEST APPLE SPICE CAKE
HARVEST APPLE SPICE CAKE
Harvest Apple Spice Cake
Recipe Type: Dessert, Breakfast
Author: Claire McCormick of “Claire Tastes”
Prep time:
Cook time:
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Serves: 16
I used plain yogurt and spiced apple cider in the batter of this spice cake, then stirred in some juicy raisins and chopped apples and pears. Sprinkle a few walnuts and brown sugar over the top before baking for a sweet caramelized glaze!
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup plain low-fat yogurt
  • 1/4 cup apple cider (I used TJ’s spiced cider!)
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup raisins
  • 2 medium apples, chopped (I used one honeycrisp and one gala)
  • 1 medium pear, chopped
  • Extra brown sugar and chopped walnuts, for topping (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375. Spray a cake pan with cooking spray or grease with shortening.
  2. In a large bowl, beat butter, sugar, and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Add egg and continue to mix. Stir in yogurt and apple cider.
  4. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Add to wet ingredients and stir until just combined.
  5. Stir in apples, pears, and raisins.
  6. Spread in an even layer in cake pan and top with walnuts and brown sugar. Bake 25-30 minutes, or until top is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean.
  7. Allow to cool at least 5 minutes, then slice into squares and serve!
Calories: 187cal Fat: 7g Carbohydrates: 30g Fiber: 2g Protein: 3g

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