Banana Bread French Toast

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Have I mentioned before that I love all things brunch? I love the laziness of eating later in the morning and how it makes you feel like you belong to a secret world where everyone loves to relax and indulge. Before going Paleo, brunch was a whole different thing for me. It was eating as many sweet things as I could find and “balancing” it out with high carb, starchy hash browns. This Paleo banana bread french toast is a Sunday morning favorite in our house…and bonus, it’s healthy! It takes brunch to a whole new level. It tastes delicious–like it should be awful for you– but I promise you, it’s not! Enjoy!

Ingredients:
1 loaf coffee crumble banana bread (recipe here)
2 eggs whisked
1 tablespoon water
1 tsp vanilla extract
cinnamon
butterIMG_1945

Mix together the eggs, water, and vanilla and pour into a low bowl. Slice 6-8 pieces of the banana bread (1” thick). Place a piece of bread into the egg mixture and let soak for 5 seconds. Flip the bread and let soak for 5 more seconds.IMG_1955

Sprinkle cinnamon onto both sides. Heat 1-2 tbsp of butter in a 12 inch skillet over medium heat. Cook the french toast for 5 minutes per side. Serve with butter and warm maple syrup.

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Makes 3-4 servings.

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Vanilla Pudding Cake

IMG_2567This recipe started out as a horse of a different color. I was working on a banana cream pie and made a vanilla pudding base that wouldn’t set right. I realized half way through that I used the wrong amount of gelatin.

But it tasted too amazing to just throw it out!  Instead, I added a blend of flours to the “vanilla pudding” that I have found to be a great base for cakes and muffins: almond flour, tapioca flour, and coconut flour (the trifecta). I love it when a unfortunate mistake turns into something delicious! Enjoy!

Ingredients:

Dry:
2 tbsp coconut flour
2 cups almond flour
1/3 cup tapioca flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp sea salt

Wet:
1 can of full fat coconut milk
1/2 cup honey
1 tbsp vanilla
6 egg yolks
1 & 1/2 tsp gelatin

In a 2 quart sauce pan, heat the honey and coconut milk over medium heat while whisking.  In a separate bowl whisk the egg yolks.  Add into the sauce pan the vanilla and egg yolks while stirring.  Bring to a low boil and remove from the heat.  Slowly whisk in the gelatin.  IMG_2439

Once fully incorporated, pour the mixture into a bowl and let cool in the refrigerator for 2 hours to set, stirring occasionally.  It will become thicker but not firm.  .  IMG_2446Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Using a medium sized bowl, mix the dry ingredients together until well incorporated. Add the dry ingredients into the wet.

Using 2 round 8 inch cake pans, grease with either coconut oil or shortening, and lightly sprinkle with about a tablespoon of almond flour. You also can cut 2 circles of parchment paper and line the bottom of the cake pans to help the cakes fall away from the pan easier.

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Bake the cakes for 35-40 minutes. Run a knife around the perimeter of the cake pans to loosen the sides. Tip upside down over a clean counter surface and give light taps on the bottom until the cakes fall away. IMG_2574

Drizzle with a lemon glaze (recipe here) and fresh berries. Simply to die for.

Paleo Sugar Cookies

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This gluten free sugar cookie is very versatile–it wears chocolate well, sprinkles look great on it, it can turn into an ice cream sandwich–pretty much there is no way to eat it wrong.

Ingredients:
2 and 1/2 cups almond flour
1 cup room temperature butter
1 cup coconut palm sugar
1/2 cup tapioca flour
1 egg
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp sea salt
3 tbsp full fat coconut milk
1 tbsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Using your hand held or stand mixer whip together the butter, sugar, coconut milk, and vanilla.

In a separate bowl, mix together the dry ingredients (almond flour, tapioca flour, baking soda, and sea salt). Add the dry ingredients into the wet. Once mixed and incorporated, spoon out the batter onto parchment lined cookie sheets 1 tbsp of batter per cookie.

Flatten the cookies gently with your hand or bottom of a glass (it helps to have your hand slightly wet so the dough doesn’t stick to you). Bake for 13-15 minutes. Let cool and decorate (or just eat). FYI I like to use organic sprinkles- click here to find them.

IMG_2239Store in a baking dish with parchment paper in between each layer of cookies to avoid them sticking together.  Makes about 30 cookies 

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Paleo Tuscan Soup

IMG_1735This has to be hands-down my favorite soup in the world. It tastes sinfully delicious and satisfying. I frequently double this recipe and freeze half for another day.  The base is a blend of coconut milk and chicken stock making this a gluten-free, paleo-friendly recipe. You can easily modify this recipe and make it in a crockpot but I prefer to cook this the old fashioned way-in a dutch oven on the stovetop and slowly incorporate all the ingredients. There is just a hint of spiciness to this soup so it shouldn’t be too much for little taste buds. Enjoy!

Ingredients:
1 lb. ground turkey
2 medium sweet potatoes cut into 1-2 inch cubes (I use 1 white and 1 orange)
2 carrots (chopped into small bite sized pieces)
4 stalks of kale (torn into pieces)
32 ounces chicken stock/broth
1 12 ounce can of whole fat coconut milk
1/2 stick of grass-fed butter (1/4 cup)
1/4 cup oil (I use avocado)
1 tbsp all-purpose seasoning (I use Simply Organic)
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion flakes
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp black pepper

Begin by heating a 12 inch skillet with 2 tbsp oil over medium heat. Add the ground turkey, all purpose seasoning, sea salt, and black pepper. Brown the meat. While that is cooking heat the remaining 2 tbsp of oil in a dutch oven or 6 cup pot over medium heat. Add in the carrots, garlic powder, and onion flakes. Sauté for 10 minutes. Add the coconut milk, chicken stock, butter, sweet potatoes, red pepper flakes, and cook for 20 minutes stirring occasionally. Add the kale and browned ground turkey.  Cover with a lid, decrease the temperature to low and cook for another 30 minutes stirring occasionally.IMG_1750

Makes 4-6 servings

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Banana Chocolate Chip Cupcakes

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If you have children, go to parties, celebrate Wednesdays, or breathe air having a delicious cupcake recipe is a must.  Cupcakes equal happiness…unless you have a dairy or gluten allergy.  Then they just equal upset stomachs and headaches.

Well not with this recipe!  I modified these cupcakes from Elana’s Pantry Chocolate Chip Banana Cake recipe.  These cupcakes are gluten-free, paleo, dairy-free and simply homemade yumminess!  And the frosting is a perfect addition to a scrumptious dessert!  To get the dairy-free chocolate frosting recipe click here.

Ingredients:
3 cups almond flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3 eggs
1 tbsp vanilla
2 mashed ripe bananas
1/4 cup oil (I use sunflower oil for this recipe)
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup chocolate chips (I use Enjoy Life or Equal Exchange semi sweet chocolate chips)
1/2 cup walnut pieces

Preheat  oven to 350 degrees.  Using a handheld mixer or stand mixer whisk together 3 eggs in a large bowl.  Add mashed bananas, maple syrup, vanilla, and oil.  Mix all of these wet ingredients together.

In a separate bowl mix together almond flour, baking soda, and sea salt.  Add your dry ingredients into your wet.  Once combined, mix in the chocolate chips and walnuts. Line a cupcake tray with either silicone or paper baking cups.  If you use silicone make sure to lightly grease them with coconut or palm oil so that the cupcakes fall out easily.  Fill the baking cups 3/4 of the way.  Bake fore 25 minutes.  Let cool an hour before frosting.  Find my dairy-free chocolate frosting recipe by clicking here.

Yields 18 cupcakes

Here they are on display at my daughter’s 2nd birthday party (she’s a Halloween baby which explains the witches and pumpkins).  They were a huge hit- especially with the kiddos.

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Cranberry Sauce

This cranberry sauce is truly somewhere between a jelly and a relish.  If you want more of the jelly you can omit that walnuts and puree  by using an immersion blender once it is done cooking.  Also this sauce is not as sweet as the canned kind so if you find it too tart you can increase the honey to a full cup.  We love to make this for dinner and snack on the leftovers like you would applesauce.  The walnuts add a great texture to the mix as well.

Ingredients:

16 oz Fresh Cranberry

2 Cups Orange Juice

¾ Cup Honey

½ cup  Walnuts

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Instructions:

Combine Cranberry, Orange Juice, and Honey in pan. Simmer on medium, stirring occasionally until cranberries begin to split (about 25-35 minutes). Use potato masher to crush berries. Add chopped walnuts and simmer for another 10 minutes. Cranberry Sauce will thicken as it cools.

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