Pass the Swerve Please


Whether you’re swearing off sugar, trying the Keto diet, or going low-carb, Swerve sugar replacement is such a game changer.

I am NOT a fan of the nasty after taste some sweeteners have. Swerve doesn’t have it, and it equals sugar measurements teaspoon for teaspoon so there’s no guessing when following recipes. Sometimes a simple change or swapping of ingredients goes a long way.

If you start your day off with a cup a Joe, you don’t wanna mess with your mix, right? Switch to Swerve – zero calories, zero guilt, and your coffee doesn’t have to change. Here is the science behind it:

  • Zero-calorie sweetness is achieved by the combination of erythritol & oligosaccharides
  • Erythritol naturally occurs in many fruits & vegetables through fermentation
  • Oligosaccharides are sweet, non-digestible carbohydrates sourced from select fruits & starchy root vegetables
  • Oligosaccharides are prebiotic fibers, so they’re not only tasty, but they help stimulate beneficial bacteria in your gut
  • Swerve does not affect blood glucose so there’s no spike in insulin!

If you’re not about “dieting” but into making better choices, then Swerve is the ultimate sugar replacement. There’s nothing worse than trying to make your go-to yummy recipe of muffins and using a sweetener that’s overpowering, ruining your favourite treat.

I switched to Swerve a few months ago and love it. What are some of your healthy swaps? 

***Links will take you to Amazon where you can purchase product if you like. I am an part of the Amazon Associates Program.***

Yummiest Blueberry Muffins!


I love blueberry muffins, but homemade, so I can see what’s going in. I’m going to share a muffin recipe that’s become a staple in our home. All of us enjoy them, even my picky kids. It’s a recipe that combines tidbits from a slew of recipes I have tried. I have finally got it right! Here we go…

Makes 12 muffins
Preheat oven to 400 degrees
Line a muffin tin or spray with Pam (I rub coconut oil all over mine)

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 TB baking powder
  • 1 & 1/4 cups oats
  • 3/4 cups FRESH blueberries
  • 1/2 brown sugar (I use Swerve substitute – has no yucky aftertaste and doesn’t spike insulin) Get it here (affiliate): Swerve
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup applesauce

Directions:

  • In a large bowl, sift together flour, cinnamon, salt & baking powder
  • Stir in the oats, blueberries & sugar until just combined
  • In a small bowl, beat the eggs, then mix in oil and applesauce
  • Pour the egg mix into the larger bowl and blend till combined
  • Fill muffin tins and bake for 20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean

The oats give the tops of these muffins a slight crunchy texture, so biting into one is amazing. They are moist and delicious and won’t last long! Store them in a sealed tupperware container in the fridge and eat within seven days.

 

Bumpkin Reusable Snacks Bags are My New BFF


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I am currently obsessed with these Bumpkins Reusable Snack Bags! Waterproof, washable and absolutely adorable, they now replace my endless use of ziploc bags for carrying my kids’ snacks around in my bag.

They come in a bunch of cute designs including firetrucks, Dr. Seuss, dinosaurs and more. My kids love unzipping them and indulging in their snacks. And not only am I saving myself from a car full of little baggies, it’s way better for the environment too.

More info:

  • They’re labtested food safe 
  • Zipper closure
  • These ones measure 7″W x 3.5″H but there are other sizes!
  • BPA, PVC, Vinyl, Phthalate and Lead free
  • Machine washable & dishwasher-safe (top rack) 
  • Sold in single or multiple packs!

Bumpkins Reusable Snack Bags are the BEST for school snacks too. Tupperware can take up space so these are a great alternative. I highly recommend these adorable snack bags for daily use or even back-to-school gifting!

A is for Avocado


ganze und halbe avocado isoliert auf weiss

Avocado was the first solid food I introduced to Jacob. He ate it like he stole it. Today, he lunges for it when it’s in front of him. It makes me so happy that he loves such a GOOD vegetable. I give it credit for his amazing memory skills and vocabulary. I know I’m bias, but his little brain blows me away. He just turned two, and he’s putting sentences together already. And when he sees letters or colours anywhere, he hollers them out…and is usually bang on. I stare at him and wonder when the heck he learned all these things.

But then I remember the avocado. It REALLY is brain food. And he eats a ton of it. Mind you, I’ve also been reading to him since he was three months old. Not because I’m trying to raise a baby Einstein, but because I myself enjoy reading and it’s a great activity for the two of us to share.

I’m a proud momma for many reasons. But two reasons the mentions are

  1. When there’s candy and cereal, juice and chocolate around, Jacob will ask for the lone avocado on the counter
  2. When we’re sitting on the living room floor surrounded by toys and blocks, he walks over to his bookshelf and chooses one of many Thomas the Tank Engine books to read with me.

Thanks, Avocado

I owe you one.

 

Sweet Sundays: Zucchini Bread Recipe


zucchini bread

This recipe makes two loaves of zucchini bread – one for you, and one for the rest of the family! It’s so moist with a little crisp to the outer layer. Bring it to a potluck or to work and people will bow to you 😉

What You Need

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 ½ cups shredded zucchini (about 1 medium-sized zucchini)
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup walnuts

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. In a large bowl, combine the first seven dry ingredients
  3. In another bowl, combine eggs, zucchini, oil and vanilla extract
  4. Stir egg mixture into dry ingredients ***When it’s all combined, the consistency is pretty pasty, that’s normal
  5. Fold the walnuts in
  6. Pour into 2 greased 9x5x3 loaf pans
  7. Bake for about 1 hour and 10 minutes ***Some ovens will bake it in one hour, so do the toothpick check at the one-hour mark
  8. Let the loaves cool in the loaf pans for at least 30 minutes before removing

You can also add chocolate chips to this recipe. Just decrease the walnuts to ½ a cup and add ½ cup of chocolate chips. And for chocoholics…or those allergic to walnuts, replace the whole cup of walnuts with chocolate chips.

Cabbage Rolls


SAMSUNG

I had to call my mother before making this just to brush up on some steps I wasn’t sure of. The recipe is below if you’d like to try it. This is a great Sunday meal that’s filling and delicious! It’s also great to bring to a potluck.

What You Need

  • 1 cabbage
  • Tomato sauce (check out this post for my homemade recipe) or purchase a jar you like
  • Ground beef (one med to large pack)
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 3 gloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • ½ cup grated parmesan

Instructions

  • Heat oil in pan, add onions & garlic
  • Cook for about 5 minutes
  • Add ground beef
  • Mix in salt & pepper, oregano & pepper flakes
  • Brown & cook meat fully. Meanwhile…
  • Pull off a few outer leaves of cabbage and throw away
  • Carefully pull off cabbage leaves, you’ll need about 12
  • Wash leaves
  • Bring a pot of water to boil
  • Blanch leaves in batches for about 6 minutes each or until flexible, without breaking
  • Let air dry or pat with paper towel if in a rush
  • Lay out leaves and scoop about three tablespoons of ground beef on each
  • Top with a healthy pinch of mozzarella cheese
  • Begin rolling, tucking leaves inwards at the sides to hold meat in
  • Repeat for remaining rolls
  • Scoop some sauce onto bottom of oven-safe baking dish
  • Place rolls in dish
  • Cover each roll with sauce
  • Cover with aluminum foil
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until fork very easily pokes through cabbage roll
  • Top with grated parmesan before serving

Enjoy!!

Sweet Sundays: Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe


Cookies

Last night I had a sweet tooth. Normally I like watching Cops on Saturday at 8pm, but if I didn’t get my sugar fix, I may have been the one in cuffs by the end of the evening. I’m kidding – like 80% kidding.

So while I listened to Cops from the kitchen, I whipped up my favorite oatmeal chocolate chip recipe. They have a nice crunch on the outside, but inside, they’re gooey, chewy and delightful.

The recipe is below. Enjoy!

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

 Ingredients:
  • ¾ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 ½ cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups quick-cooking oats
  • 1 ½ cups chocolate chips

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Combine flour, cornstarch, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg & salt in a large bowl, set aside
  • In a large bowl, cream together butter & sugars until fluffy
  • Add egg whites & eggs in, one at a time
  • Stir in the vanilla
  • Gradually stir in the flour mixture, scraping the sides of the bowl as you go
  • Stir in the oats & chocolate chips
  • Drop by rounded spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet
  • Bake for 8 to 10 minutes
  • Let the cookies stay on the cookie sheet for 5 mins after taking out of the oven
  • Transfer cookies to cookie rack to continue cool
  • Eat them all yourself! Ha, kidding – like 80% kidding 😉

**Makes approximately three dozen cookies**