“An Apple a Day in a Whole New Way” – Apple Pie Chia Seed Pudding

Last year was we had a beautiful summer but as much as I love the summer I hate the way cooking heats up the whole house, so I set out to find and/or create simple easy healthy no cook recipes for the summer months. Simple? Easy? Healthy? No Cook? And Tasty? Yup, I won’t settle for anything less on my blog. If it’s not tasty why bother making it. I’ve read so many recipes on chia pudding and how good it is for you but most were with nut milk. I didn’t have any of the ingredients around except the chia seeds. That said, I did notice the 5:1 ratio of liquid to seeds. So I thought, since I’ve got some left over apple juice I’d give that a try. It turned out delicious and it was so simple. If you can stir you can make it and a half cup makes a “stick with you” breakfast cup. It’s a great make ahead dish to grab when you’re in a hurry, just put it in little ½ cup jelly jars, cover and store in the fridge.

Apple Pie Chia Seed Pudding
Apple Pie Chia Seed Pudding

INGREDIENTS:

1 ¼ cups apple Juice (I make my own and preserve it in mason jars)

¼ organic chia seeds

2 tablespoons real maple syrup

½ teaspoon organic ground cinnamon

½ cup of applesauce or chopped apples or walnuts (optional) whatever you like

Whipped heavy cream sweetened with maple syrup (optional) (Omit for vegan)

Apple Pie Chia Seed Pudding Ingredients
Apple Pie Chia Seed Pudding Ingredients

DIRECTIONS:

Put the apple juice, chia seeds, maple syrup and cinnamon into a medium bowl and stir until there are no clumps. Cover and put in fridge overnight. Stir in optional fruit and/or nuts. Serve with maple whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon.

Makes about 4 – ½ cup servings.

Enjoy! Here is one of my favorite quotes to start your day!!

 

“Peace is not the absence of turmoil but the presence of God”

 

 

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Fudge Brownies: A Great Way to Eat Your Fruits, Veggies and More

Fudge Brownies: A Great Way to Eat Your Fruits, Veggies and More.

This is NOT your traditional Fudge Brownie but uniquely delicious and sinfully healthy!

Fudgy Brownies
Fudgy Brownies

I found this recipe for Chef Richards’s Rehabbed Brownies on the Everyday Health website and couldn’t believe how healthy they sounded which left me skeptical about taste and texture. I made the recipe as it was printed on the website and was taken aback that all me skepticism had been quashed. That got me thinking. Could they be improved upon or be made into variations. My favorite thing is to start with a base recipe and make several variations. Some of the variation I’ve come up with is Chocolaty Mint Brownies by omitting 1 teaspoon of vanilla and the nuts and adding a teaspoon of peppermint extract and adding ¼ cup of crushed candy canes and ¼ cup dark chocolate mini chocolate chops.

The key to making these brownies healthier is the reduction of traditional cooking oil and processed sugar. We will use a very ripe avocado (that’s right avocado) and ground flax meal to replace most of the oil and an over ripe banana, light agave nectar and stevia leaf as the source for most of the sweetness.

What a great way to get the kids to eat veggies, fruit, nuts, whole grains and omega3 fatty acids.

A great way to get your fruits and veggies
A great way to get your fruits and veggies

Fudgy Brownies

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Grease an 8 x 8 inch square cake pan (I use a kitchen natural bristle paint brush for this). Cut (2) 8 inch wide strips of parchment paper. Place one strip of parchment in the greased cake pan leaving the ends overhang (you will use these to lift out the brownies from the pan when they have cooled). Grease the parchment and place the second 8 inch strip of parchment in the cake pan perpendicular to the first. Grease this one also. Make sure the parchment is smoothed securely to the cake pan.

Mix together:

1 very ripe avocado (pitted peeled and pureed)

1 large over ripe banana (peeled and pureed)

1 large organic egg (beaten)

¼ cup coconut oil

½ cup raw or granulated sugar

3 tablespoons of Stevia natural sweetener

¼ cup agave nectar

2 teaspoons organic vanilla extract

3 tablespoons of ground flax meal

Blend well and add:

¾ cup dark baking cocoa

¼ cup organic unbleached all purpose flour

¼ cup stone ground whole wheat flour

Mix until lump free then fold in:

¼ cup chopped pecans

¼ cup chopped walnuts

Spread batter evenly in lined cake pan and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of chopped pecans.

Bake for 35 minutes until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Cool in cake pan on cooling rack for 30 minutes. After cooling lift out of cake pan by lifting parchment overhangs. Cut into 2 inch squares. Serve. YUM!

Note: These brownies have a chocolaty banana flavor which is a is a combination I personally like but if you prefer a more chocolaty flavor I imagine replacing the banana with an additional avocado and ¼ cup additional stevia would probably work just as well.

Update: for those who prefer not to have the fruity flavor of the banana mixed with the cocoa use the following combination of ingredients.

Mix together:

2 very ripe avocados (pitted peeled and pureed)

¼ cup coconut oil

Blend until lump free and then add:

2 large organic eggs (beaten)

½ cup raw or granulated sugar

3/4 cup of Stevia natural zero calorie sweetener

¼ cup agave nectar

2 teaspoons organic vanilla extract

2 tablespoons of ground flax meal

Blend well and add:

½ – ¾ cup dark baking cocoa (depending on how chocolaty you prefer) (I use 2/3 cup)

¼ cup organic all purpose flour

¼ cup stone ground whole wheat flour

Fold in:

¼ cup chopped pecans

¼ cup chopped walnuts

Spread batter evenly in lined cake pan and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of chopped pecans.

Bake for 35 – 40 minutes until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Cool in cake pan on cooling rack for 30 minutes. After cooling lift out of cake pan by lifting parchment overhangs. Cut into 2 inch squares. Serve. All feedback is welcomed!