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Banana Brownies

These banana brownies are a marriage between my oat flour banana bread recipe and chewy chocolate brownies. Bananas are so abundant here on Hawaii Island. They are also extremely versatile and especially great with chocolate. This recipe features coconut oil, maple syrup, and oat flour instead of wheat, butter, and refined sugar. It uses organic cocoa powder instead of processed chocolate chips. These are a guilt free dessert. Eat em up! Use a little less oat flour if you’ like them to come out more gooey than cake like, try substituting a different flour if you’d like a smoother brownie mouth feel.

Banana Brownie Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup liquid coconut oil
  • 3 cups mashed banana
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla2016-11-19-15-11-18
  • 4 eggs beaten
  • 1 2/3 cups oat flour (ground oatmeal)
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • macadamia nuts for topping

Steps:

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. Oil 9 x 11 baking pan
  3. mash and measure bananas. I use a immersion (stick)
    blender and
    its done in 30 seconds. You can leave some chunks if you want the banana chunk vibe
  4. in a bowl combine all the ingredients starting with the liquid (oil, eggs, maple syrup, vanilla, banana).
  5. Then add the dry ingredients (salt, baking powder, cocoa powder and oat flour)
  6. Mix well and pour into pan
  7. Top with optional chopped macadamia nuts.
  8. Bake in oven for 25 minutes.
  9. Serve warm or cool!

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Blueberry Banana Spelt Muffins

These blueberry banana spelt muffins have become a staple in my household. I make a double batch and they still hardly last us through the week. Perfect for breakfast, a snack or dessert. The amount of sweetener can be adjusted to your taste, but I tend to reduce the amount of maple syrup or honey and add a little stevia. This recipe highlights the use of spelt flour in cooking. Below is a little more information on spelt.

Spelt (Triticum spelta) is a grass that originated in southeast Asia.  A relative of wheat, spelt is thought to be the “wheat” that was used over 9,000 years ago, it is considered an ancient grain and has been referenced in the bible. It remained a favorite grain until the 19th century agricultural revolutions and the modernization of wheat strains.

Spelt is more easily  digested than regular wheat and it has a reputation for helping people maintain good health. Additionally, it has more protein, fat and fiber than wheat, making it a  a high-quality energy source. The gluten in spelt is of a different molecule pattern than that in modern wheat. Whereas, today wheat has been designed/bred to have a high gluten content, the character of the gluten in spelt has not been modified from its natural state.

According to the World’s Healthiest Foods website: “Spelt does not seem to cause sensitivities in many people who are intolerant of wheat.” This is why my sweeties begs me to make him spelt muffins – we are taking a break from regular old wheat. In baking, spelt behaves like whole wheat flour and has a wonderfully nutty but subtle flavor. In comparison to oat flour, rice flour, etc. which have strong flavor profiles, spelt makes a better wheat substitution.

Recipe for Blueberry Banana Spelt Muffins

Equipment:

  • oven
  • muffin tin
  • 2 mixing bowls
  • measuring cups and spoons

Yield: 6 large muffins, 12 small-medium muffins

Dry ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups white spelt flour
  • 1/2 cup instant rolled oats
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder (aluminum free)
  • 1/2 tsp fine ground good salt (like Celtic Sea salt)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Wet ingredients:

  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (unrefined or refined) liquid form (but not hot)
  • 1/3 cup honey (substitute maple syrup, or reduce the sweetener and add a few drops of stevia)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 ripe bananas mushed well

Add last

  • 1 1/2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen

 Steps:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Line muffin tin with coconut oil
  3. Mix wet ingredients well in medium bowl
  4. Mix dry ingredients well in separate smaller bowl
  5. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredient and mix well but do not over mix
  6. Fold in blueberries at the end
  7. Bake for 40-50 minutes at 350 degrees F for 6 large muffins. Reduce baking time to 20-30 minutes for smaller muffins. Baking time varies on environment, keep a close watch on your muffins looking for a firm golden-brown edge and top.
  8. Tooth pick should come out clean when inserted. Cool 5 minutes and remove from muffin tin.
  9. Enjoy these blueberry banana spelt muffins while still warm
 blueberry banana spelt muffins

 

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Healthy Carrot Cake with macadamia nut frosting

This healthy carrot cake recipe is made with coconut oil, significantly less sugar, and goes great with macadamia nut frosting.

A few days ago, I told my hunny I would not try to make another carrot cake for his birthday. The first one I made for him, was huge, dense, moist, but dense, it took days to make our way through ½ of the leftovers and we ended up giving the rest to our dog. BUT, I couldn’t resist trying to make another, better, healthier and with less sugar. This one comes out, light, moist, and moderately sweet, so you can eat an entire piece and feel good. healthy carrot cake

Recipe for Healthy Carrot Cake:

Yield: This recipe makes approx. one 9 x 12 by 2 inch cake, 15 servings or so.

Ingredients for the cake:

dry

  • 2 cups organic white flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons aluminum free baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon celtic sea salt

wet

  • 4 eggs beaten well
  • 1 ¼ cup organic coconut oil (liquid, if you melt it make sure it cools before adding)
  • 1 ¼ cup brown cane sugar (to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups grated carrots

Steps:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Oil glass baking pan with coconut oil
  3. Mix the dry ingredients well in medium bowl.
  4. In large bowl, add the beaten eggs, coconut oil, vanilla, and sugar.
  5. Gently mix in the grated carrots.
  6. Add, little by little, the dry ingredients to the wet.
  7. Lastly, add to oiled baking pan and bake for 40-50 minutes until the cake springs back when you poke with a finger or when toothpick inserted comes out clean.

 

Macadamia Nut Maple Syrup frosting

Yield: approx: 1 ½ cups

Ingredients for the frosting:

  • 2 ½ cups macadamia nuts
  • up to ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 4 drops of liquid, alcohol free stevia
  • 2 tablespoons + water

Steps:

  1. Add mac nuts, add ½ maple syrup (2 tablespoons) and water to a good blender and blend on high .
  2. Next, taste for sweetness, add a few drops of stevia (not too many as it can enhance the flavor of maple syrup but too much can make it taste almost bitter).
  3. Add more maple syrup to taste.

Variation –

This slight variation will allow you to feed a few more people. It is 1.5 times the recipe above. I also use maple syrup instead of sugar and add cinnamon and a bit more oil to give the cake more moisture.

Ingredients for the cake:

dry

  • 3 cups organic white flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 4 teaspoons aluminum free baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon celtic sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon

wet

  • 6 eggs beaten well
  • 2 3/4 cups organic coconut oil (liquid, if you melt it make sure it cools before adding)
  • ⅔ cups maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 4.5 cups grated carrots
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Coconut oatmeal cookies

I love cookies and cookie dough and cookies. This recipe for coconut oatmeal cookies is made with coconut oil instead of butter. Therefore, this recipe is dairy-free for those who are sensitive to butter. Also, coconut oil is full of medium-chain fatty acids that aid in your overall health. As a rule I bake as much as I possibly can with coconut oil.

Because these cookies are made with coconut oil, don’t expect the same vibe as your typical oatmeal raisin cookies. This recipe is also designed to be less sweet than the typical cookie recipe. In general, this is also a great practice. Our world is now addicted to sugar. Our taste buds have evolved to expect super sweet baked items. Try gradually reducing the amount of sugar you put in your recipes. Your taste buds and bellies will be pleasantly surprised. Also, you can try reducing the sugar and putting a few drops of alcohol-free stevia, which is calorie-free and completely plant derived.

To make this recipe gluten-free, you can substitute the flour in this recipe with your favorite gluten-free flour mix. Alternatively, you could try substituting other flours like Spelt, Einkorn etc.

For other baked goods with coconut oil check out:

Banana chocolate macadamia nut cookies

Blueberry Banana Spelt Muffins

Healthy Cornbread with Coconut Oil

Cinnamon buns with coconut oil and macadamia nut frosting

Healthy oat flour banana bread with passionfruit cream cheese frosting

Recipe for Coconut Oatmeal Cookies:

Equipment: Oven and baking sheets

dry ingredients:

  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat
  • 1/4 cup white flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • about 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • add 1 cup shredded coconut (unsweetened is best)

wet ingredients:

  • ½ cup melted coconut oil
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup

steps:

  1. Preheat oven to #50 degrees F, use coconut oil to lightly grease baking sheet.
  2. In medium bowl mix the dry ingredients (except the shredded coconut).
  3. Also, in another larger bowl mix the wet ingredients (including sugar or maple syrup).
  4. Then, in parts, mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until thoroughly combined but not over mixed.
  5. Fold the coconut into the cookie batter
  6. Then, spoon the batter (about 1 inch) onto cookie sheets greased with coconut oil
  7. Finally, bake the cookies in oven at 350 degrees F for 10-15 minutes until browning on bottom and solid and almost golden on top.
  8. Let cool a few minutes and enjoy warm : )
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Cinnamon buns with coconut oil and macadamia nut frosting

This recipe for cinnamon buns with coconut oil is a very special treat in my house. It is not exactly a quick recipe as you have to let the dough rise twice. When developing this recipe I was inspired by a recipe from Allrecipes.com http://allrecipes.com/recipe/ninety-minute-cinnamon-rolls/ . The Allrecipes.com recipe I found duplicated across the web with slightly different instructions.

 

A healthier version of cinnamon buns

The first time I made them I could taste the butter in every bite. It was a little too rich for me. On me and my boyfriend’s first year anniversary he begged me to make it healthier. Mainly he wanted me to make cinnamon buns with coconut oil instead of butter. In this recipe I still use just a little bit of butter in the filling because I was scared it would not come out good. In the future I will probably try it with no butter, or maybe make like a nut butter filling instead of serving it with nut-based frosting.

This recipe also features a little honey instead of sugar in the dough so the dough itself is not overly sweet. Then for the frosting, instead of refined powdered sugar, I use macadamia nuts and pure maple syrup which gives the icing a dose of nutrition that you can feel good about slathering on to your buns.

Recipe for cinnamon buns with coconut oil and served with macadamia nut frosting

Yield: Makes about 12 rolls

Equipment: Bread mixer like a kitchen aid for kneading (otherwise a food processor or other heavy duty mixer) and a blender for the icing.

Ingredients for the dough:

  • dry ingredients:
    • 3 and ½ cups unbleached white bread flour
    • 1/4 ounce packet of active yeast (2 ½ teaspoons)
    • ½ teaspoon salt
  • wet ingredients:
    • ¾ cup whole milk
    • 1/4 cup organic coconut oil (4 tablespoons)
    • 1 medium-large egg
    • 1/4 cup water
    • 1-2 tablespoons Big Island honey

Ingredients for the filling:

  • one cup brown sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons coconut oil (solid state preferred)
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Ingredients for the frosting:

  • 1 and ½ cup macadamia nuts
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup water or less

Steps for the buns:

1) Mix 2 and 1/4 cup flour (reserve 1 cup for adding after wet ingredients).  ingredients together in large mixing bowl.

This recipe, and any other recipe where the dough must be kneaded, is best with a heavy duty stand up mixer that has both a paddle attachment and a dough hook. If you have one, use it and mix the dry ingredients briefly with the paddle. If not, you should be using either a hand mixer, other stand up mixer, or a large food processor will get you half way there.

2) Heat the milk until bubbly and add the 1/4 cup coconut oil

3) Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add 1 egg, 1/4 cup water, honey to taste, milk and coconut oil mixture.

4) Mix until incorporated. Slowly add the remaining 1 cup of flour to the bowl and when the dough starts to come free from the sides of the bowl you need to stop the mixer  and knead it by machine or by hand.

Kneading the dough

5) Kneading, if you have a heavy duty mixer with a dough hook, you can replace the paddle attachment now with the dough hook. Set to the lowest speed and let it knead for 5 minutes (do not over do it). If you do not have a dough hook, than turn it out on to lightly floured surface, and start kneading! Set a alarm for 8 minutes and don’t think about it until it goes off. If the dough is uniform and elastic it’s probably done.

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6) Let rest for 10 minutes, place a towel over it for better rest.

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7) Meanwhile mix the cinnamon, coconut oil, butter and sugar together.

8) Flour a large surface like a clean counter or large cutting board. Roll the dough into a large rectangle (about the size of a pan, 12X9 and about 1/3 inch thick).

9) Spread the cinnamon/sugar mixture with a rubber spatula or spoon evenly on the rolled out rectangle dough.

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10) Starting at the longest side, roll the dough gently into a log.

11) You can try cutting with a knife, but no matter how sharp it is, it’s hard to cut without handling or deflating the dough.

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Instead, you could be a pro and use a piece of unscented dental floss, placed under the roll to wrap around and cut off the perfect bun.  In some of the pictures below, you’ll notice I tried making heart buns. To do this just unroll the most forward side and curl it to the center to make a heart.

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12) Place in 2 round cake pans oiled with coconut oil, slightly touching.

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13) Then let these rise for 30 minutes until they are almost doubled in size.

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14) Finally, bake in oven at 375 degrees for 15-20 minutes until golden brown on top.

Step for the icing:

1) While the buns are baking make the icing.

2) To do the icing add the mac nuts, vanilla extract, and maple syrup into a high powered blender and blend until smooth adding little bits of water as needed to make a smooth consistency.

3) When the buns are done, cool on a wire rack for a few minutes.

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4) Serve warm with frosting and love.

cinnamon buns with coconut oil

Below are basic ingredient lists I put together on myfitnesspal.com

For the cinnamon rolls, this is assuming the recipe makes 12 equal servings. For the icing, this is about 2 tablespoons each of icing and is approximate. So a full roll with 2 tablespoons icing would be about 450 calories.

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