Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Apple Carrot Whole Grain Kefir "Cupcake" Muffins

Yay! More healthy cupcakes!  These are made with carrots, apples or pineapple, kefir, and whole wheat.  Super yummy!  You can frost them with cream cheese icing or just eat them as muffins.  Very moist and delicious!

2 cups grated carrots
2 cups grated apples OR 1 large can drained crushed pineapple
1 1/2 cups sugar or equivalent sugar alternative
1/2 cup coconut oil or melted butter
1/2 cup ripened milk kefir
3 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla
3 cups whole wheat flour
3 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
2 tsp baking soda*

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Cream together sugar, eggs, oil, kefir carrots, apples, and vanilla.  In a separate bowl combine remaining ingredients and then gradually combine to carrot mixture.  Stir until well blended.  To use the kefir as leavening, let batter stand on countertop for 1-2 hours before baking.

Pour into lined muffin cups.  Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

*Depending on your kefir, baking soda may not be needed.  Kefir acts as leavening.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Chicken & Rice Casserole (Freezable),

2 c. diced cooked chicken
1 1/2 cup sauce (below)
3/4 c. mayonnaise, sour cream, or kefir cream
1 tbsp. lemon juice
2 c. diced celery
2 tbsp. minced onions
2 c. cooked rice

3 tbs butter
3 tbs flour
1 cup milk
1/2 cup chicken stock

In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Add flour and stir until the butter and flour are well combined. Pour in milk and stock, stirring constantly as it thickens. Add more milk depending on desired consistency.
Combine all ingredients and stir thoroughly.
Optional: Add fresh or frozen peas or broccoli, top with crushed corn flakes or cheese.

For dinner tonight: 
Bake in a x13 pan at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. 

For a freezer meal:
Cover with foil and freeze.
To serve: Thaw overnight in refrigerator.  Bake at 350 degrees 45 min to 1 hour or until heated through and bubbly

Friday, February 8, 2013

Thin Mints

I made these tonight and they turned out great! I love the real chocolate wafers compared with many of the ritz cracker versions out there.  Super delicious!

Prep: 25 minutes
Yield: 3 dozen cookies
Thin Mint Cookies
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar.
  • 1/2 cup of cocoa powder 
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup of flour 
  • 2 cups chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon mint extract
  •  coconut oil
  1. With a hand mixer, cream the butter. Add the sugar, and continue to cream. Add the cocoa powder, salt and vanilla and mix until well combined.  Chill 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. Roll dough and cut into circles about 1/8" thick and place on cookie sheet.  Or, if you are lazy like me, roll the dough into small balls (a little larger than a marble) and smoosh them flat on a cookie sheet.  Bake for 10 minutes.
  4. Remove from oven and carefully move cookies to cooling racks
  5. Place the chocolate chips, mint extract and coconut oil in a heavy bottomed pan or double boiler and carefully melt together until liquid and well blended.
  6. Put parchment on the now-cooled cookie sheets.
  7. Carefully drop each cookie into the melted chocolate and spoon chocolate over the top of each cookie. Use a fork to fish it out and gently shake the fork to remove excess chocolate. Place on parchment paper. Repeat until all of the cookies are covered.  Chill cookies in refrigerator another 30 minutes or until set.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Yellow Cupcakes: A Win From the Kids (Healthy)

What the kids don't know about these "cupcakes" is that they are really corn muffins made with whole grains, the sugar is drastically reduced (this recipe contains half the sugar of a "corn bread" recipe on the corn meal box), and they are light because of the secret ingredient: Greek Yogurt.  Try them out with your favorite topping and see if your family can tell the difference.

Prep: 15 minutes
Bake: 18-20 minutes
Yield: 32 Cupcakes

3 cups 100% whole wheat flour, (hard white)
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 cup yellow corn meal
2 tbs baking powder
5 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup milk
2 cups greek yogurt
1/2 cup ground flax seed
1/2 cup vegetable oil of your choice
4 tbs melted butter

Preheat oven to 350 F.   Line muffin tins.

Combine flour, sugar, corn meal, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl.  Combine milk, eggs, oil, butter, flax, yogurt in a small bowl. Mix well.  Combine both bowls and stir until just blended.

Pour into prepared muffin cups and bake for 18-20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.