Ginger Granola

I adore granola. I love trying all different kinds. Recently, I bought a ginger granola from Whole Foods. It was so delicious that I thought I’d try to create my own version. It tastes just like it, maybe even better! This would even be a great basic granola recipe if you left the ginger out too! Hope you like it!

Ginger Granola
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Ingredients
  1. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  2. 3 Tbsp coconut oil
  3. 4 Tbsp sweetened condensed milk
  4. 2 cups quick cooking oats
  5. 1/2 cup slivered almonds
  6. 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  7. 1/4 cup pumpkin spice (or regular) pumpkin seeds
  8. 1/2 cup coconut flakes
  9. 2 tsp powdered ginger
  10. 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  11. 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  12. pinch of salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325*F. In a small bowl, combine the vanilla, coconut oil, and condensed milk. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a standing mixer, combine the remaining ingredients. Stir to combine.
  3. Pour in the wet ingredients and mix on low until all of the granola is coated evenly.
  4. Spread evenly on a sheet pan.
  5. Bake for 25 minutes, flipping halfway. Cool completely and store in an airtight container.
Little Baby Watson http://littlebabywatson.com/

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Pumpkin Spice “Donut Holes”

Usually, by the time August comes around, I’m completely over summer and already pulling out my fall decorations. This year has been a little different. I haven’t been in a rush for “what’s next” like I usually am. I’m definitely in love with the stage Turner is in right now. He’s hilarious and non-stop, so I’m not trying to wish anything away! I actually wish time could stand still.

Last night seemed to be the turning point for me. I spent the night at Starbucks while Stew hosted a poker game with his friends, and I was enjoying the cooler weather that seemed to just appear out of nowhere! I sipped on my Salted Caramel Mocha and played around on Pinterest. Everything I came across was hinting towards cooler weather: dark nail polish, chunky sweaters, and pumpkin everything! It definitely got me into the fall spirit!

This morning, we had a slow start to the day which allowed me time to bake a little fall treat. I love everything apple and pumpkin-spice! So I made a healthier version of pumpkin spice donut holes. I swapped out the flours and baked them instead of frying. They were absolutely delicious! I had to take a second to share them with you!


Pumpkin Spice "Donut Holes"
A healthy spin on pumpkin-spice donuts!
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Ingredients
  1. 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  2. 1/2 cup coconut flour
  3. 3/4 cup almond meal
  4. 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  5. 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  6. 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  7. 1/8 tsp ground clove
  8. 2 tsp baking powder
  9. 1/2 tsp salt
  10. 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  11. 1/2 cup milk
  12. 1/2 cup brown sugar
  13. 1 egg
  14. 2 Tbsp unsweetened applesauce
  15. 1/3 cup coconut oil (warmed to liquid)
  16. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  17. Cinnamon Sugar (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. Lightly coat a mini muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  3. In a standing mixer, combine flours, spices, baking powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together pumpkin puree, milk, brown sugar, egg, applesauce, oil and vanilla.
  4. With the mixer on low, pour in the wet ingredients. Mix until just combined.
  5. Use a small ice cream scoop to place batter evenly in muffin tray.
  6. Bake for 15 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  7. Remove from oven and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.
  8. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Little Baby Watson http://littlebabywatson.com/

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Nutty Banana Bread Granola

This granola is AMAZING. I am always on the search for great granola recipes that aren’t packed with sugar! I recently found a recipe that sounded yummy. The original can be found here. I made a few changes that added some protein and were “toddler friendly” since Turner loves yogurt parfaits!

I start by combining the oats, pecans, and cinnamon in the standing mixer. I just give that a quick mix to incorporate the dry ingredients. Then, on the stove, I heat the mashed banana, maple syrup, brown sugar, coconut oil, and almond butter, just until they’re well combined.

After that’s combined, I pour it into my mixer and mix until the oats are completely coated with the wet ingredients. I spread it out on a baking sheet and pop it in the oven for 30 minutes.

And, there you have it! A delicious granola recipe for everyone in the family!

Nutty Banana Bread Granola
A nutty and protein packed granola recipe for the whole family!
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Ingredients
  1. 3 cups quick cooking oats (or old fashioned)
  2. 1 tsp. cinnamon
  3. 1 cup chopped pecans
  4. 1 ripe banana, mashed
  5. 1/3 cup maple syrup
  6. 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  7. 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  8. 2 Tbsp almond butter
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. In a small saucepan, combine the mashed banana, syrup, brown sugar, oil, and almond butter. Heat over medium-low heat until sugar and oil have melted and the mixture is combined.
  3. In the bowl of a standing mixer, combine oats, cinnamon, and pecans.
  4. With the mixer on low, pour in the wet ingredients. Mix until well combined and oats are completely coated.
  5. Spread onto a baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes (stirring halfway through) until the granola is dry and golden brown.
Notes
  1. Let cool completely and store in an airtight container in the fridge.
Adapted from The Messy Baker
Adapted from The Messy Baker
Little Baby Watson http://littlebabywatson.com/

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Mini and Me Smoothie

The warm weather has gotten me in smoothie mode! And, since I don’t puree baby food for Turner anymore, I find that tucking secret ingredients into our smoothies is the perfect way to get his veggies in! I just make a big batch so I can have a full smoothie and he can have a mini one! This is our absolute favorite, as you can tell by Turner’s expression!




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Mini and Me Smoothie
Serves 1
A sneaky, yet delicious, way to pack you and your family with veggies!
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Ingredients
  1. 1/2 frozen banana
  2. 1/2 cup frozen raspberries
  3. 1/2 cup frozen strawberries
  4. 1/2 cup frozen mango
  5. 1 cup of greens like spinach or kale, washed
  6. 1/2 avocado (flesh)
  7. One cup almond milk
  8. One heaping tablespoon almond butter
  9. 1 teaspoon maple syrup
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in Vitamix (starting at low speed and slowly increasing) or a high speed blender and blend until smooth!
Little Baby Watson http://littlebabywatson.com/

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Carrot Almond Butter Snack Bites

I found a delicious recipe months ago that I’ve been meaning to try. I finally had some time to test recipes this morning and came up with a little spin on these Carrot Almond Butter Bites. I kept it pretty similar. I just changed up a few ingredients and blended it up in the food processor so it’s extra “toddler friendly”. 


Carrot Almond Butter Snack Bites
Yields 22
A delicious and healthy kid-friendly snack!
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Ingredients
  1. 3 carrots (washed, peeled, and grated)
  2. 1 cup quick cooking oats
  3. 1/2 cup quinoa flakes
  4. 1 tbsp chia seeds
  5. 1 tbsp ground flax seed
  6. 1 tsp cinnamon
  7. 3/4 cup almond butter
  8. 2 Tbsp maple syrup
Instructions
  1. Using the shredding disk for the food processor, grate three carrots. Take out the shredding disk and put regular chopping blade in. Add in the rest of the ingredients and blend until well combined. You may need to scrape down the sides and pulse it a few more times.
  2. Use a small ice cream scoop to keep bites uniform. Roll each scoop into a ball in your hands. Place in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Freeze up to 3 months.
Adapted from New You Blog
Adapted from New You Blog
Little Baby Watson http://littlebabywatson.com/

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Apples, Apples, and More Apples!

I received an email last week from our farm share letting us know that Farmer Pete was on his way back from Hendersonville, NC with a truckload of honey crisp apples! I nearly jumped with joy! I immediately ordered a half bushel so we could pick it up with our delivery last Thursday! Since then, we’ve been eating apples like it’s going out of style!
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Now that the weather is finally cooling down, I am ready for some apple butter!!! In an effort to take the sugar out of our diets, I made a healthier, homemade version, of apple butter using our honey crisp apples!! I started by scrubbing all of the apples and cutting them into quarters. I removed the cores and stems. Then, I put them into the bowl of my slow cooker and threw in the rest of my ingredients!
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As the hours go by, the apples just melted and caramelized. I stirred the apples every few hours to keep them from burning on the bottom.
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After 20 hours on low, I ladled the apples into my Vitamix and blended it up. I spooned it into a mason jar with a lid and popped it into the fridge, after tasting it of course! It was DELICIOUS! Rich, thick, and appley!
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I adore everything fall. As an added bonus, this recipe made the house smell so good! It’s perfect for slathering on our spelt toast, mixing into oatmeal and smoothies, or even eating it by the spoonful! Happy eating!

Healthy Apple Butter

10 honey crisp apples
1/2 cup Coconut Sugar
1 cup organic apple cider
1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
pinch ground clove

Wash all of the apples. Cut apples into quarters, and remove the stem and core. Place apples into the bowl of your slow cooker. Add in the rest of the ingredients. Give it a stir. Turn the slow cooker on low for 20 hours, stirring every few hours. Use a ladle to place the apples into a blender (or use an Immersion Blender). Blend until smooth. Store in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer for up to one month.

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Protein Breakfast Cookie

I call these cookies, because they’re just as good. But there’s really nothing “cookie-like” about these, other than their shape. They don’t have butter, sugar, flour, or anything “cookie-like” in them! They ARE, however, full of protein and flavor. They’re the perfect option for a quick snack or a breakfast on the go.

Having a small baby and a full time job makes it difficult to get a good meal in. Turner is getting much better with age. I can sit him in his high-chair while I cook, and he just watches me. But I definitely still have a million things to do in a day! So this is my go-to breakfast or snack! 

 

Protein Breakfast Cookie
Yields 6
The perfect on-the-go breakfast or snack!
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Ingredients
  1. 1 medium ripe banana, mashed
  2. 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  3. 1 Tbsp maple syrup
  4. 1 heaping Tbsp almond butter
  5. 3/4 cup quick cooking oats
  6. 1/2 cup almond meal (I used Trader Joe's brand)
  7. 1/2 tsp baking powder
  8. 1/2 tsp baking soda
  9. 1 Tbsp chia seeds
  10. 1 Tbsp cinnamon
  11. 1/2 cup diced apricots
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Mash banana in a small bowl with a fork. Add to standing mixer. Add applesauce, syrup, and almond butter to the banana and mix until well combined. In a separate bowl stir together oats, almond meal, baking powder, baking soda, chia seeds, and cinnamon. Turn mixer on low and add in dry ingredients. Fold in apricots (you can add other things like raisins, dried cranberries, dried apples, sunflower seeds, etc). Use a 1/4 cup ice cream scoop to place mounds of dough onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 17-18 minutes until outside starts to brown and they are cooked through the center. Recipe makes 6 large cookies. Store in airtight container in fridge for 4 days or in freezer up to 4 months.
Little Baby Watson http://littlebabywatson.com/
 

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No Fry French Fries

I know it’s been a while since I posted a food recipe!  My FeastUrEyes blog has been out of commission (if you haven’t noticed). I made the switch to this blog to simplify my life. So, side note, if you were subscribed to FeastUrEyes, I lost you! So subscribe to this one :o)

Potatoes get a bad rap…poor little guys. They really aren’t bad for you! They are starchy, yes, but in moderation they’re fine! The reason they get a bad name, is because people usually eat them fried or doused in oil!

There’s nothing like a good french fry. Am I right? Stew and I made these one night and became instantly obsessed.  They are just as crispy and flavorful as those naughty french fries we know and love but without the guilt! And to top it off, they’re super easy to make! I’ve even used this same method with sweet potatoes. I sprinkle those with some cinnamon which is amazing! I promise this recipe will replace any french fry recipe you’ve used in the past!

I start by cutting up the russet potatoes and soaking them in cold water for a few minutes. This removes some of the excess starch. Then, I take them out and spread them in an even layer on a kitchen towel. I roll it up like a jelly roll. They need to be very dry so they crisp up, so let them sit in that towel while you vacuum the house or feed the baby (in my case)!

Spread them on a cookie sheet, drizzle oil, salt, and pepper. Mix well with your hands. Spread them in an even layer so they’re each laying flat on a side. Pop them in the oven. Flip halfway through the cooking time. Remember to make sure they are laying flat on one of their sides. IMG_0509
Once they’re browned and crispy, take them out. Sprinkle them with a little more salt and pepper, if you’d like, while they’re hot. Dish them up and gobble them down with a big helping of ketchup! IMG_0524IMG_0531
No Fry French Fries
Serves 2-4 depending on the size of the potatoes
2 Russet Potatoes, cleaned and peeled
1 1/2 Tbsp olive oil
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

Preheat the oven to 450°F. Clean and peel the potatoes. Cut them into matchsticks. Soak them in a bowl of cold water for 5 minutes. This removes some of the excess starch. Spread them in an even layer on a kitchen towel. Roll it up like a jelly roll to dry the potatoes. Spread them in an even layer so they’re each laying flat on a side on a cookie sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Mix well with your hands. Bake for 25 minutes. Make sure to flip occasionally during the cooking time, and make sure they are laying flat on one of their sides. Once they are browned and crisp, remove from the oven. Sprinkle with some sea salt to taste.

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Roasted Garlic

We usually have Sunday dinner at my mom’s house with the whole family. Last week she made a turkey sausage lasagna that was to die for! My mom is the most amazing cook. I learned everything I know from her. We always talk about recipes and different ingredients we experiment with. One of us will try an ingredient, tell the other about it, and low and behold, it will end up in the other’s cabinet!

I always bring something to Sunday dinner, whether it’s a dessert, appetizer, side, or salad. I never show up empty handed! So when I asked my mom what she needed me to bring, she said an appetizer. Stew and I were trying to think of something we haven’t had lately that would go well with Italian. We’ve done the whole antipasto platter, caprese salad, and bruschetta thing. So he thought of roasted garlic!  My family is full of garlic fanatics. We went to my mom’s early and roasted the garlic at her house while we hung out. Me, Stew, Mom and Michael (my stepdad) ended up eating 4 of the 5 heads of garlic before anyone else even showed up!!! It’s a good thing we all had bad breath together. It was roasted to perfection. The perfect starter for our yummy lasagna!

All you need is a nice crusty baguette, some garlic heads, olive oil, and salt & pepper.IMG_0185

Cut the tops off the garlic and place them in a garlic roaster. If you don’t have a roaster, you can put them in a pouch of tin foil! Drizzle the garlic with olive oil. Then sprinkle with salt and pepper.IMG_0197

While the garlic is roasting, slice up the bread. Coat each side with nonstick spray and sprinkle with salt and pepper. You can use a grill pan if you don’t have an indoor grill. Just cook them for about 3 minutes on each side until they get nice grill marks and are a bit crisp.IMG_0201The garlic should roast at 350° for about an hour. It will come out looking brown and will be very soft to the touch! You can always sprinkle with a little more salt and pepper if you want. Plate it up and enjoy!IMG_0206

Roasted Garlic –Serves 8-10

5 heads of garlic

1 baguette

olive oil

Nonstick spray

salt

pepper

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Cut the tops off the garlic and place them in a garlic roaster. If you don’t have a roaster, you can put them in a pouch of tin foil! Drizzle the garlic with olive oil. Then sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Place the garlic in the oven for about an hour, or until the garlic is brown and starts to pop out of its skin. It should be very tender to the touch.

While the garlic is roasting, slice the bread into 1/4 inch slices. Coat each side with nonstick spray and sprinkle with salt and pepper. You can use a grill pan if you don’t have an indoor grill. Cook them for about 3 minutes on each side until they get nice grill marks and are a bit crisp. Serve the bread alongside the garlic. Use a small butter knife to scoop out the garlic and spread onto the bread. Bon Appétit!

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Pumpkin Spice and Chocolate Chip Granola

I’ve been in total baking mode lately. I’m pretending it’s Fall, even though it’s still 90 degrees during the day. The only problem with baking is that I end up with all of these empty calorie laden treats calling my name case in point, the chocolate chip cookies sitting on my kitchen counter that I’m hoping the hubs will eat before I do! I was all ready to make a pumpkin spice cake filled with WHITE flour and ZERO nutritional value. Then I thought, let me see if I can create a semi-healthy recipe that will satisfy my empty calorie-pumpkin-spice craving! Well, let me tell you, I DID IT! When I bit into this granola, I felt like I was in pumpkin pie heaven! I opted to put in just enough chocolate chips for a sweet bite, but not too many where I’d feel guilty after eating it. You can definitely leave the chocolate chips out and replace them with nuts or dried cranberries, which would be delicious too! I wish you could have been here while this was baking. It literally smelled like Thanksgiving in my house (minus all the calories)! I hope you enjoy this little Fall treat! 
Pumpkin Spice & Chocolate Chip Granola
3 cup rolled oats
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon of ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
 1/4 cup coconut oil (or vegetable oil)
1/4 cup honey
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine all ingredients in your standing mixer and, using the paddle attachment, stir on low until well combined. Spread the granola onto a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes. GENTLY toss the outer granola into the center so the edges don’t burn. Keep in mind, the chocolate chips are melted and will spread throughout the granola a bit. That’s ok! Continue to bake for another 20 minutes. Let cool COMPLETELY on the baking sheet. Once cooled, store in an airtight container.  Enjoy!

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