4 Ingredient – Steel Cut Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

A Steel Cut Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie that only has 4 ingredients. Will keep your sweet tooth satisfied but is sugarless, flour-less, and butter-less!

Oatmealcookies

4 Ingredient Steel Cut Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

I usually make my quick oatmeal chocolate chip cookies with quick cooking oats but I had a container of steel cut oats that were going unused. If you want you can make this recipe with traditional quick cooking oats it will be great. The steel cut oats add more chew to the cookie and have to be baked a little bit longer because the Steel Cut Oats take longer to cook.

These cookies are about as healthy as a cookie gets. They have 2 ripe bananas, chia seeds, dark chocolate chips, and steel cut oats. That means no flour, no sugar, no butter, and no other ingredients. The banana acts as a binder and keeps the cookie together while also very moist.

I also love these 4 Ingredient – Steel Cut Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies because I am indulging in a cookie yet they also keep me full. 1/4 cup of Steel-Cut Oats only has 140 calories, 5 grams of protein, 27 carbs, 4 grams of fiber, and 0 grams of sugar!

Steelcut Oatmeal Cookies

These 4 Ingredient Cookies are also fun because you can subsitute whatever you have on hand! Use walnuts, vanilla or even cinnamon.

Here’s what you need!

  • 1 cup of steel cut oatmeal OR quick cooking oats
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup of dark chocolate chip or semi sweet chips

What to do:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mash banana with a fork until soft, fold in the 1 cup of oats, chia seeds, and dark chocolate chips last.
  2. Use a cookie scoop to form 1 inch round balls and flatten down with top of cookie scoop. If using steel oats you will need to cook for 20-25 minutes or the oatmeal will still be hard and crunchy. If using quick cooking oats reduce cooking time and check to make sure they don’t burn.
Oatmealcookies

4 Ingredient Steel Cut Oatmeal Cookies

I love how simple these cookies are. You don’t need to add any other ingredients to get a great and healthy cookie! The chocolate chips help if you are feeding them to kids! My nephew loves anything that involves chocolate.

If the steel cut oats do not seem like they have softened enough, keep baking. If you’re not sure about the texture – use quick regular oats!

Enjoy!

~Hunter

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Quest Bar Cookies

Cookies and Cream Quest Bar Cookies

Cookies and Cream Quest Bar Cookies

Cookies and Cream Quest Bar Cookies

Quest Bars are really great if you are trying to be low carb and relatively low calorie while eating a diet high in protein. A quest bar has 21 grams of protein, only 3 net carbs and 180 calories. The protein bar advertises itself as a way for people to #CheatClean. I really do like these protein bars and my favorite flavors are cookies and cream, cookie dough, chocolate brownie, and s’mores. They have so many more flavors than that though such as white chocolate raspberry, lemon cream pie, and even Pb&J! All the flavors sweets people love.

I am always trying new things when it comes to snacks at night that won’t ruin my whole day of healthy eating. Sweets in moderation is okay. This is just a fun way to treat yourself if you are trying to stay strict with what you are eating.

Although these bars are good when you are in a rush and want to stay full they also are great to bake with. I love to make these quest bar cookies which are pretty much the easiest dessert ever. I especially love these because they are quick to make and sometimes at night I just need something sweet, I love the idea of “cheating clean.”

All you need for this recipe is…

1  Quest Bar (I suggest cookies and cream where you get real cookie crumble in the bar).

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 

Take quest bar and put it on a cutting board. Cut the bar in half the long way and then into 12 squares. Flatten down on the cutting board with the palm of your hand.

Place on a baking tray with non-stick spray.
Quest Bar Cookies

Bake for 5-7 minutes until cookies are slightly browned. If you cook them longer they may be more like a cookie crisp.

If you haven’t tried a Quest Bar before I am starting to see them come into major retailers now but you can also find them at GNC or on Amazon.com 

Enjoy with Almond Milk!!

~Hunter

Note: These are only so low in carbs because they contain sugar alcohols.

Banana Crumb Muffins

banana crumb muffins

The crumb topping makes these muffins stand out from the ordinary muffin!

In the mornings I love to stop for coffee and get a muffin to go from Starbucks. However, if I did this every morning though it would be way too unhealthy and expensive. The Starbucks muffins are yummy but they have preservatives and a lot of ingredients which make them taste good as well as high in calories. I decided to make my own banana crumb muffin that I could bring with me on-the-go and grab a coffee.

These Banana Crumb Muffins especially come in handy when I am in a rush to get to work or school. On these days I don’t have time to sit down and eat a full breakfast. Instead I would make the banana crumb muffins the night before, microwave 1 banana crumb muffin for 35 seconds in the morning, wrap it in tinfoil so it stays warm, grab a yogurt, and go on my way. Don’t worry, these banana crumb muffins would be delicious even without heating them before you leave in the morning if you don’t want an extra step.

The crumb topping is an extra treat and the recipe really works when you have a bunch of extra ripe bananas. That’s where the idea for this banana crumb muffin recipe came from. I usually would make a banana bread but this time I was in search of something a little different. Once you bite into the banana crumb muffins you get the banana flavor throughout the whole muffin and it is just delicious!
banana crumb muffins

I also hated the fact that whenever I made muffins in the past they wouldn’t be big like when you buy them from a shop. After some research I learned you need to bake the muffins at a higher temperature, put them in the oven ASAP after mixing, and do not over mix.

Here’s what you need:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 3 bananas, mashed

  • 1/4 cup of light agave nectar

  • 1 egg, lightly beaten

  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  •  tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon butter

What to do: 

  1. Preheat oven 400 degrees. Lightly grease 8 muffin cups, or line with muffin papers. (Filling the muffins more will make less muffins but a bigger muffin top)
  2. In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar, 2 tablespoons flour and cinnamon. Cut in 1 tablespoon butter until mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Put aside
  3. In a large bowl, mix together 1 1/2 cups flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. In another bowl, beat together bananas, agave, egg and melted butter. Stir the banana mixture into the flour mixture just until moistened. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups filled almost to the top.
    banana crmb muffins
  4. Sprinkle crumb mixture on top of muffins.
    banana crumb muffins
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 15-18, until a toothpick inserted into center of a muffin comes out clean.

Recipe adapted from All Recipes.com

Enjoy for a delicious breakfast with some hot coffee!

~Hunter

Egg Muffins

Spinach, Bacon and Cheese

egg muffins

An easy to make breakfast that is delicious. Egg muffins is a breakfast I have been wanting to try for the longest time! Everyone kept telling me that these are perfect for a weekday breakfast when you need to grab something and go. These egg muffins will last a few days in the refrigerator and then when you want to eat one you can pop it in the microwave for 30-45 seconds until warm.

But, if you don’t want to make these for the week then make them on a weekend. While everyone is sleeping simply combine all the ingredients and then bake them in the oven for 25-30 minutes. They are so delicious when served fresh! Light and fluffy filled with sauteed spinach, crisp bacon, and cheesy goodness.

If you wanted to use egg whites for this recipe that would be perfectly fine. Next time I may try using egg whites to see the difference in texture. Spinach, bacon, cheese and egg muffins would also make a great lunch if you needed to grab something quickly. Eating healthy doesn’t have to be difficult or take a long time, you just need to prepare ahead of time.

What you need:

  • 5 large eggs
  • 2 small handfuls of spinach, chopped
  • 3 pieces of bacon
  • 1/4 cup plus a splash more of milk
  • 1/3 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
  • good size pinch of salt, and pepper

What to do:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a saute pan cook bacon according to package. Remove from pan and pat dry. Then chop bacon into bits. Drain the excess fat from the pan and put in the spinach cooking quickly. Saute until just cooked and remove from pan.
    egg muffin ingredients
  3. Spray a muffin tin really well with non-stick cooking spray (these have a tendency to stick). This a half batch of egg muffins so it will only make about 5 or 6. Double to make a larger batch.
  4. In a large bowl whisk together 5 eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Add in the bacon, spinach and half the cheese.
  5. Scoop the egg mixture into muffin tins using a 1/3 measuring cup until filled to almost the top. Will probably only make about 5 or 6 egg muffins. Fill the empty muffin spaces with a little bit of water so it cooks evenly.
  6. Sprinkle with a little more salt and pepper if desired and top with shredded cheese. ( I ran out of shredded cheese so I used cheese cubes)
    egg muffins
  7. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until eggs are set and just cooked through. Tops of egg muffins should be cooked not wet and soggy. Carefully remove from pan while still warm.
  8. Serve immediately for a nice breakfast with a few fresh raspberries or let cool and store covered in fridge until ready to eat.
    egg muffins

Enjoy!!

Mixed Berry and Banana Smoothie

mixed berry and banana smoothie

Raspberries, Strawberries, Blueberries, Blackberry and Banana Smoothie

So many berries!! This Mixed Berry and Banana Smoothie has 4 different berries in it. That’s thanks to Trader Joe’s. The organic mixed berry blend is picked at the peak of ripeness and frozen within hours of picking. I love this bag of mixed berries because you don’t have to choose or buy expensive fresh fruit that goes bad the next day. There is a little bit of each berry when I make my smoothie and it tastes delicious!

I think we all enjoy making smoothies but for the past month I haven’t really felt like making them. Last week, I was inspired when I picked up a container of fresh raspberries from the store that looked amazing (not old and rotten). I also probably didn’t feel like making smoothies because the weather has been so cold all month. Just another reason to be happy when winter ends, more delicious and colorful smoothies.

This is a fun recipe and I use greek yogurt so the smoothie is a little thick – I used almond milk to thin it out (I prefer a thiner smoothie).

What you need:

  • 1 cup of Trader Joe’s organic mixed berries
  • 1 small banana
  •  7 oz container of vanilla or plain greek yogurt  (or 1 cup)
  • 1/2 cup of milk (skim or almond, more if needed to thin out)
  • chia seeds for topping
  • fresh raspberries for top if desired

What to do:

  1. In a blender combine 1 cup of frozen berries, small banana, greek yogurt, 1/2 cup of milk until is smooth and reaches desired consistency
  2. In a cup put a few ice cubes and pour smoothie over it. Top with raspberries and chia seeds.
    mixed berry banana smoothie

The colors are just so pretty. 

Enjoy!

p.s. I put a little chopped up banana on top as well.

Banana Oat Muffins with Chia Seeds and Mini Chocolate Chips

Oatmeal Banana Muffins (NO FLOUR OR BUTTER)!!!

Banana Oat Muffins with Chia Seeds & Chocolate Chips

Banana Oat Muffins with Chia Seeds & Chocolate Chips

I am a huge fan of muffins, but whenever I get them from Coffee shops I never know what’s in them. :/ I decided to try and make my own muffin I could bring with me and have with coffee in the morning when I am in a rush to get to school or work. So far its been working out pretty well and must importantly they keep me full!

These Oatmeal Banana Muffins have chia seeds which are packed with nutrients as well as fiber and a fair amount of protein. Perfect for keeping us full longer!

Banana Oat Chia Seed Muffin These muffins also use Oatmeal instead of flour. So the  batter is less chunky I used a food processor to make it smooth! You can leave out the mini chocolate chips but I only put a little because they are yummy!

I would definitely make these again. I always find myself having bananas that are too ripe to eat and would normally make banana bread. This is a fun way to mix it up instead of your traditional banana bread recipe. Since I am always trying new combinations I rarely make something the exact same way twice. Unless its worth it of course. This recipe I would definitely make the same way again!

What you need: 

  • 2 cups of old fashioned rolled oats
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1 cup plain greek yogurt ( I used vanilla it was all I had)
  • 1/4 cup of brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons chia seeds +1 for topping the muffins before baking
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 cup of mini chocolate chips + 1 tablespoon for sprinkling on top

What to do:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and prepare 1 muffin tray by spraying well with non-stick spray. You can use muffin liners just spray those also because this batter can stick to the wrapper.
  2. Add the oats, bananas, greek yogurt, brown sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, and baking soda to a food processor. Blend well until the batter is smooth and creamy to break down the oats. Stir in 1/2 cup of mini chocolate chips per hand.
  3. Pour batter into muffin pan about 3/4 of the way full in each muffin. I used a cookie scoop (it was about 2 even scoops per muffin). Sprinkle with leftover teaspoon of chia seeds and the extra chocolate chips.
    Banana Oat Chia Muffins
  4. Bake in oven for 15-20 minutes. Mine were done in 15 minutes. Test it by using a toothpick in the middle of the muffin and make sure it comes out clean. Allow muffins to cool for 5-10 minutes before removing from muffin pan.
    IMG_7327
  5. Store in a container with a lid and enjoy these delicious muffins for breakfast or snacks!

This recipe is from Running With Spoons, a really great blog you should check out!

 

 

Avocado Chicken Salad

avocado chicken salad

A light and mayonnaise-free chicken salad! Use avocado instead of mayonnaise for a healthier more nutritious lunch!

Lunch is always hard for me to figure out what to eat. A salad is always a good option but sometimes I want something different like a sandwich. I usually try to stay away from condiments like mayonnaise but sometimes if used moderately it is fine. Avocados are a great option if you simply do not like mayo or you want something that is healthier. Avocados are considered a healthy fat unlike mayonnaise.

Avocado chicken salad can be made anyway you like it! Add in your favorite chopped vegetables like bell pepper, celery, carrots, whatever you like! In this recipe I used chopped bell peppers because that is what I had on hand. Or keep it simple with just shredded chicken and avocado.

The avocado makes the chicken salad creamy and really delicious without and extra ingredients. You will be surprised at how filling and tasty this dish is. If you are making just for your self just use less chicken and less avocado to adjust serving size.

Avocado Chicken Salad (mayo free!!)

What you need:

  • about 4 cooked chicken cutlets shredded or chopped (you could also use rotisserie chicken)
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 cup of red and yellow chopped bell pepper
  • salt and pepper
  • juice of half a lemon

What to do

avocado chicken salad

Mash avocado until creamy and squeeze half juice of lemon. Take chopped chicken and put into avocado mixture. Use a salad chopper or fork and mash until well combined. Stir in bell peppers and season well with salt and pepper. Serve with whole wheat bread on a Sandwich or even in a salad for extra protein.

Apple Spiced Muffins

Apple Spiced Muffins!
apple spiced muffins

I am still trying to use up all my apples from apple picking the other day. I am finding new ways to use apples and loving it. I love to grab a muffin but sometimes when you get from a coffee shop you just don’t know what’s in them.

Today, I decided to make my own apple spiced muffins. These apple spiced muffins are sprinkled with extra cinnamon (of course that doesn’t hurt) and you can actually taste the chunks of apples as you eat them- yum!

The apple spiced muffins have ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg.

Ingredients: 

  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • a little less then 1/2 cup of granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup of melted butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of almond milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup of chopped apples (I left majority skin on)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line 12 cup muffin pan with paper.

Mix together flour, salt, baking powder, and spices

Combine butter and sugar, then add egg and mix well. Add milk and vanilla to wet mixture. Slowly addd the dry ingredients to the liquid mixture until blended.

Spoon batter into muffin pan with tablespoon until almost full bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Sprinkle with cinnamon.

Enjoy!

Recipe from http://www.cooks.com/recipe/mh9uo3c8/apple-spice-muffins.html

Mini Apple Pies

miniapplepie

Mini Apple Pies...a delicious treat after picking 20 pounds of apples in the Hudson Valley! I love apples and cinnamon, it is a classic combination. Now sometimes we get carried away with the extra sugars that get added into a pie.

This recipe keeps it simple and highlights the flavor of the apples without being too sweet. These are perfect to bring on the go, give to your friends, or keep for yourself! I love anything that is personal size, who doesn’t?

These apples were picked off the trees in North Salem at Harvest Moon Farm & Orchard. A great day to spend a fall day. This place is filled with apple cider, apples, donuts, pies, pumpkins and tons of other foods! A must visit when apple picking. Beware though this place can get so crowded on weekends.

Here’s What you Need for these Mini Apple Pies:

  • 1 refrigerated pie crust
  • 2 cups of apples chopped small ( I peeled one and left the skin on the other)
  • 3 tablespoons of sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup of flour
  • 1/4 cup of oatmeal
  • 1/4 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/2 stick of melted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

What to do:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Spray muffin tin with non stick spray
  3. Roll out room temperature pie crust and cut out 3 inch circles to place in the bottom of the muffin tins. If you have extra dough I made mini muffin versions by just cutting the dough smaller.
    DSCN0772
  4. Make apple mixture by combining apples, sugar, cinnamon, and lemon juice.
  5. In a small bowl make the topping by combining flour, oatmeal, brown sugar, melted butter, and cinnamon in a bowl.
  6. Begin building mini apple pies: put 1 heaping tablespoon of apples into the muffin tray with an even amount in each mini pie.
    DSCN0774
  7. Then sprinkle even amount of oatmeal topping on each pie covering the apples.
    DSCN0776
  8. Bake 18-20 minutes until crust is browned. Let cool and remove from muffin tin. You can serve warm or room temperature!

Beware these are addicting!

Weeknight Sausage & Peppers

Sausage & Peppers Served with Wild Brown Rice.
sausage and peppersDuring the week I am always trying to find meals that are quick and easy or can even be made in advance. It seems that if I don’t I find myself going to bad habits such as ordering in unhealthy foods. Like pizza! If I have a healthier option I would rather eat that but sometimes there just isn’t enough time to cook during the week!

This recipe was made for meal prep purposes. On the nights that I work until 8 o’clock I have no desire to cook when I get home. I find that prepping my meals ensures that I will eat the right foods.

Serve this meal with a green salad and you will have a delicious, quick weeknight meal.

This sausage and pepper recipe is so easy and you could add chicken stalk or a can of diced tomatoes to spice this up. I kept it pretty basic and it’s still delicious.

What you need:

  • 1 package of Italian turkey sausage about 6 sausages
  • 4 cups of sliced bell peppers (I used red green and yellow)
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • garlic powder
  • Italian seasoning
  • 1 cup of wild brown rice cooked according to package

What to do:

  1. 1. Preheat one smaller saute pan with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and one larger with 2 tablespoons olive oil.
  2. Once hot add Italian sausage to the small pan and cover. Cook until brown on each side. About 5-10 minutes. Remove from pan and slice on a cutting board. It’s okay if the sausage is still a little pink on the inside because we will add it to the pepper mixture.
  3. While sausage is cooking add bell peppers to larger saute pan with garlic powder, salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning.
    sausage and peppers
  4. Add sliced sausage to the bell peppers and cook for another 5-7 minutes with lid on. You want to cook until the sausage is no longer pink and bell peppers are still a little tender.
    sausage and peppers
  5. Enjoy and split portions into containers with a little bit of brown rice in each one.
    Refrigerate and eat as needed. Can be reheated in microwave.