Maple Peanut Butter & Jelly Muffins {vegan}

Peanut Butter & Jelly Muffins Peanut Butter & Jelly Muffins

Konnichiwa! The boy and I are in the land of the rising sun and we’re loving the balmy heat of summer and the re-immersion into our much-loved second home (or third – I guess Singapore can be considered our second). This must be James’ fifth time holidaying in Japan (third for me) and I think we’re now very well acquainted with Tokyo. This time we’re staying in the Asakusa area, which is a change from our usual base in Shibuya. Tokyo’s all very well and good, but I am most looking forward to our stay in Shirakawa-go (an incredible historic village) and Fujikawaguchiko (where we’ll get a perfect view of that famous active stratovolcano, Mount Fuji). Gonna have a field day with my camera for suuuure. Just hope the weather will be good. It’s the rainy season, apparently. Continue reading “Maple Peanut Butter & Jelly Muffins {vegan}”

Flourless Peanut Butter Flaxseed Cookies with Barley Flakes {low carb}

Flourless Peanut Butter Flaxseed Cookies

Here’s a quick recipe for sweet, golden cookies with all the crunch and flavour of chunky peanut butter plus all the health benefits of flaxseeds (linseeds). Oh, and you only need five ingredients to make them! Six, if you want to sprinkle some lovely barley flakes over the top, but they’re really just there to make the cookies look prettier. The lack of flour ensures that these cookies remain low carb, while the high peanut butter content turns them into an awesome source of protein. And of course, the addition of ground flaxseeds give these an extra fibre boost! Continue reading “Flourless Peanut Butter Flaxseed Cookies with Barley Flakes {low carb}”

Supercharged Maca & Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Balls

If simple, nutrient dense snacks are your thing, you’re gonna love these mini “cookie dough” bites. Just throw together some heart-healthy, protein-rich natural peanut butter, a good amount of liver-cleansing LSA (pre-mixed coarsely ground linseeds [flaxseeds], sunflower seeds and almonds), a dash of hormone-regulating maca powder, and some honey, flaky sea salt, chocolate chips and vanilla extract for a flavour boost. Sound tasty? They definitely are!

This is the easiest recipe EVER. All you need is one bowl to mix everything in. Super minimal cleaning! And yeah, this recipe makes quite a number of choc-studded peanut buttery balls and you’re probably wondering “if I make a batch of this stuff, who’s gonna help me eat them all?!”. Well, fear not! They can be stored in the fridge for a long while so you’ll be able to snack on them for days!

If you’re feeling creative and are up for a little experimenting, you can substitute the chocolate chips with a whole range of other add-ins such as cacao nibs (Melbourne-based company Loving Earth offers some great certified organic raw cacao nibs from the Peruvian Amazon, among other health foods), chopped nuts (roasted almonds or hazelnuts would probably taste great here) or maybe even some carob chips. Pretty much whatever you think would go well with peanut butter.

I should probably mention how these taste. In one word? Phenomenal. Plush and doughy, the rich peanut butter gives these honey-sweetened “cookie dough” balls a luxuriously dense consistency with a firm and heavy mouthfeel reminiscent of actual cookie dough. The occasional crunch from the chocolate chips and the grittiness of the ground linseeds, sunflower seeds and almonds make for interesting textural additions. Personally, I much prefer them when they’ve been left in the fridge to chill and firm up – best summer snack ever!

Supercharged Maca & Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Balls
adapted from Pheebs Foods’ peanut butter cookie dough balls.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cup LSA (ground linseeds, sunflower seeds & almonds)
1 tablespoon maca powder*
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
a generous pinch of sea salt
1 cup natural peanut butter**
1 1/2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

* I used Nature’s Way’s Super Maca Organic Powder in this recipe. Known as the “Peruvian Ginseng”, maca is supercharged with vitamins, minerals, enzymes and amino acids.
** Be sure to use a peanut butter that is made of nothing but 100% peanuts. I used Sanitarium’s Natural Crunchy Peanut Butter. No added sugar, salt, preservatives or stabilisers!

Preparation:

  1. Combine the LSA, maca powder, sea salt and chocolate chips in a bowl. Mix well.
  2. Add the peanut butter, honey and vanilla extract to the dry ingredients and combine thoroughly. The dough will be quite stiff – use your fingers to mix if you prefer. If the dough is too sticky, just add more LSA.
  3. Roll out into balls. They’re rich little morsels so a tablespoon of dough per ball is plenty. I find dampening my hands with some water before rolling them will help to keep the stickiness at bay.
  4. Store in the fridge to keep keep them from softening. They’re lovely cold and firm.

Flourless Peanut Butter & Cacao Nib Blondies

Flourless Peanut Butter & Cacao Nib Blondies Flourless Peanut Butter & Cacao Nib Blondies

We’re finally back on the Gold Coast and there are a few stories and sets of photographs I’d like to share with you from Singapore, but they’ll have to come later. Right now, let’s talk about these blondies. I made them this afternoon during my downtime at home (if you’ve been following my tweets, you’ll know I’m still recovering from a terrible cold – not to worry, the worst is over!). Adapted from Megan’s ooey-gooey version, these blondies are quite a treat, especially if you’re stuck trying to cut carbs and eat healthy.

Natural Peanut Butter Organic Cacao Nibs Flourless Peanut Butter & Cacao Nib Blondies Flourless Peanut Butter & Cacao Nib Blondies

Natural crunchy peanut butter, manuka honey and organic cacao nibs figure prominently in this simple recipe. Megan used a much runnier peanut butter when making hers, which is probably why my batch came out less gooey than hers did. It was probably also why my batch seemed to cook a lot quicker, starting to burn a little at the edges just before 20 minutes. Despite not coming out as moist as I’d have liked, it was still a good result: a slightly flaky tray bake that, once sliced, resembled firm cake squares more than fudgy blondie bars. I do enjoy the way the peanuts and cacao nibs give them an awesome crunch. Megan used chocolate chips in her recipe, but I thought I’d give cacao nibs a go instead, for a healthier + crunchier alternative.

Flourless Peanut Butter & Cacao Nib Blondies

Not too sweet and not too salty, these blondies are still amazingly decadent in all its peanut butter glory. And best of all, they are completely flourless (making them fairly low in their carbohydrate count) and are entirely free of gluten, dairy and processed sugars! In other words, they make for a pretty healthy snack. Just make sure you don’t eat them all in one sitting!

Flourless Peanut Butter & Cacao Nib Blondies Flourless Peanut Butter & Cacao Nib Blondies Flourless Peanut Butter & Cacao Nib Blondies

Flourless Peanut Butter & Cacao Nib Blondies
gluten, grain & dairy free; adapted from the detoxinista’s flourless peanut butter chocolate chip blondies.

Ingredients:

1 cup natural crunchy peanut butter (no added sugar/salt)
1/3 cup honey*
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
a generous pinch of sea salt
1/4 cup cacao nibs**

* I used Medihoney’s Active 10+ Manuka Honey.
** I used TRU RA’s Cacao Nibs. They’re organic, cold-processed and vegan!

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 175°C and line a square 8″ baking pan with non-stick baking paper.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the peanut butter, honey, egg, baking soda and salt. Mix thoroughly.
  3. Stir in the cacao nibs.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and use a spoon to even out the top.
  5. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.
  6. Remove from oven and let cool slightly before cutting into squares and serving.

Flourless Peanut Butter & Cacao Nib Blondies Flourless Peanut Butter & Cacao Nib Blondies

Chocolate Studded Peanut & Almond Butter Cookies

Chocolate Studded Peanut & Almond Butter Cookies

These chewy, sticky macaroon-like cookies will keep your cookie cravings under control and bring your sweet tooth for a blissful ride! They are entirely flourless, and thus gluten free and moderately low in carbohydrates compared to regular cookies that use wheat flour.

Natural Almond Butter Dark Chocolate Chips

Peanut butter and almond butter are the two basic ingredients that form the substantial body of this cookie. And they do the job brilliantly. Firm and compact, with a texture much like a regular cookie, you’d never know there was no flour involved!

Natural Almond Butter & Peanut Butter Natural Almond Butter & Peanut Butter

Always use 100% natural nut butters. You don’t want to use butters with added sugar in them. That just ruins the health benefits of the nuts and adds to the carbohydrate content of these cookies. Nuts are actually very good for you. Especially almonds and peanuts. Not only are they extremely low in carbohydrates, they also contain healthy fats that aid weight loss and lower LDL (bad cholesterol) levels in the blood.

Natural Almond Butter & Peanut Butter Chocolate Studded Peanut & Almond Butter Cookies

You may decide to make your own fresh batch of homemade peanut or almond butter by using a food processor. Just grind your shelled peanuts or almonds for several minutes and the oils from the nuts will start to separate. Eventually, the mixture will resemble a clumpy, sticky, grainy substance. After 15 to 20 minutes of steady processing, you should end up with gorgeous mixture that is thick, creamy and spreadable. Voilà! Your own homemade nut butter!

Chocolate Studded Peanut & Almond Butter Cookies Chocolate Studded Peanut & Almond Butter Cookies Chocolate Studded Peanut & Almond Butter Cookies

I used crunchy nut butters in this recipe as I like these cookies to have a complementary texture to the chucks of chocolate, but you may also use smooth nut butters if you prefer. And if you want to skip the dairy, replace the chocolate with some chopped walnuts for an extra nutty cookie!

Chocolate Studded Peanut & Almond Butter Cookies

Chocolate Studded Peanut & Almond Butter Cookies
a gluten free and grain free recipe.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup natural peanut butter (100% peanuts)
1/2 cup natural almond butter (100% almonds)
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup raw caster sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C and line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper.
  2. In a large bowl, combine peanut butter, almond butter and sugars. Mix well.
  3. Gradually add the beaten eggs while mixing. Once the eggs are blended into the mixture, add the baking powder and mix well.
  4. Gently fold in the chocolate.
  5. Using a tablespoon or teaspoon (depending on how big you want your cookies), drop scoops of dough onto prepared baking tray. Leave ample room for spreading.
  6. Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until they are quite firm to the touch.
  7. Remove from oven and let stand on tray for 10 minutes before using a small spatula to transfer them to a wire rack. The cookies will come out quite soft and sticky when hot, but they will harden up as they cool.

Chocolate Studded Peanut & Almond Butter Cookies Chocolate Studded Peanut & Almond Butter Cookies Chocolate Studded Peanut & Almond Butter Cookies

Flourless Peanut Butter Chia Seed Buttons

Maybe I’m weird, but I find chia seeds beautiful. Aesthetically beautiful. If you observe the them up close, you might understand what I mean. Chia seeds are also ridiculously healthy, with sources claiming that they contain eight times more Omega-3 than salmon, making it the highest known plant source of the healthy polyunsaturated fat. This superfood is very versatile as an ingredient in cakes and muffins and because they don’t have an overly strong taste, their inclusion in recipes makes it easy to increase the nutrition value of your baked goods. Want to know more? This website shares the top 10 benefits of chia seeds.

Moving on, I have a simple recipe here for flourless peanut butter chia seed buttons. It’s an old recipe of mine that’s been sitting on a shelf somewhere and has only now come out of hiding. Good news is, these are flourless and gluten free. Better news? They’re also low carb and healthy… so long as you use Natvia and natural peanut butter (made of 100% peanuts). Or you can make some kind of compromise if you wish. Play around with quantities and ingredients if you feel like experimenting!

Ingredients:

1 cup crunchy peanut butter (natural unsweetened & unsalted for a healthier cookie)
1 egg, whisked
3/4 cup Natvia natural sweetener (or 1 cup granulated sugar)
2 to 3 tablespoons white & black chia seed mix

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C and line baking tray with non-stick baking paper.
  2. In a large bowl, combine peanut butter, Natvia and egg.
  3. Fold the chia seeds into the mixture.
  4. Roll dough into teaspoon-sized balls and flatten them slightly with the palms of your hands. Place on prepared baking tray.
  5. Bake the cookies for about 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned.
  6. Remove from oven and let sit on tray for 5 minutes before placing them on a wire rack to cool.
  7. Cookies will come out very soft (after all, heat softens peanut butter!), but will harden once completely cooled.

Hearty, Healthy Peanut Butter Dog Biscuits

The lovely smell of oven-baked peanut butter biscuits fill the chilly kitchen as I pull open the oven door, letting out an intense blast of hot air. Fudge is gonna love this, I think to myself as I carefully remove the tray with oven mitts and place it on the kitchen bench. The baked goods are hard, crunchy, chunky and flaky. Everything my dog adores.

I would now like to take this time to tell you that my passion of baking for people has extended to baking for animals. I’ve baked many different types of treats for my Sheltie over the months. But you can never go wrong with good old peanut butter biscuits. Unlike store-bought dog treats, these biscuits are free of chemicals and preservatives. They are very healthy for your pooch, as long as you use natural peanut butter in the recipe. That means the unsalted, unsweetened stuff that’s just made of 100% peanuts. Dogs are sensitive to many ‘people foods’ in general. Too much salt or sugar can be toxic to them.

The following is a safe and super simple recipe that you can use to make tasty treats for your little furry friend.

Ingredients:

2 cups wholemeal flour
1 cup natural peanut butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs, lightly whisked
1/2 cup water

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 190°C and line baking trays with baking paper.
  2. In a bowl, combine the flour and baking powder. Set aside.
  3. In another bowl, combine the peanut butter and eggs.
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix well. Add the water and continue mixing.
  5. Knead the mixture with your hands until a firm, stiff dough forms. If the dough won’t clump together nicely, add a little bit more water.
  6. On a flat surface covered with baking paper, roll the dough out to 1/4 inch thickness and use desired cookie cutter to cut dough into shapes.
  7. Place cookies onto baking tray and bake for about 20 minutes, or until dry and hard.
  8. Remove from oven and let cookies stand on a wire rack until completely cool before placing in an air-tight container.

Because no preservatives are used in this recipe, these cookies will only keep for about a week or two. Not that your dog will have any trouble devouring these yummy treats! That said, feed them to your dog in moderation please! No overfeeding!

Don’t have a dog of your own? Here’s an idea! Make a batch of these, package them nicely and give them to a friend or family member that you know has a dog! Their dogs’ll love them and they’d probably come back asking for the recipe!

Sexy Dark Chocolate Choc Chip Peanut Butter Cookies

Hello everyone! Have I got an ultra-sinful recipe for all you awesome chocoholics out there! I can’t say I’m the type to eat too much chocolate (I’m currently trying to be a good healthy girl), but I can speak on behalf of my lovely boyfriend who insists that these are a must-try type of cookie. He’s forced me to put this on my list of Things To Make Again Because They’re So Tasty.

These babies will come out of the oven tasting like thick, dense, fudgey brownies infused with a sexy complementary peanut butter hit. Yummy!

 

Note: Feel free to use regular unbleached all purpose flour instead of the gluten-free version!

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups all purpose gluten-free flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated raw sugar
1/2 cup natural peanut butter
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips (more or less if desired)

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C and line baking tray with baking paper.
  2. In a large bowl, mix flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt. Set aside.
  3. In another bowl, cream butter, peanut butter and sugars until light and fluffy.
  4. Lightly whisk eggs and vanilla in a cup until combined.
  5. Add this mixture to the butter mixture and mix well.
  6. Add this mixture to the flour mixture and slowly mix until combined.
  7. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  8. Roll cookie dough into tablespoon-sized balls and flatten slightly with the palm of you hand.
  9. Place cookies on tray and bake for approximately 12 minutes.
  10. Remove from oven and place cookies on a wire rack to cool.

Enjoy these wonderful treats with a glass of cold milk! Just don’t eat them all in one go! :)