Banana Nut Pancakes

Hello Lovely,

Did you know that this year National Pancake Day is on February 13, 2018? I never really share pancake recipes here. I'll admit I've become very fond of waffles lately, but this weekend I was particularly inspired to make pancakes. I didn't want plain pancakes of course. So I grabbed a banana and got busy! And what better way to celebrate than with banana nut pancakes? These pancakes are the perfect way to use up those lingering bananas on your counter, and with pumpkin flax granola, they are incredibly healthy, light and moist in every bite. If only we could have this for breakfast every single morning!

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Banana Nut Pancakes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all purpose flour (or vegan alternative)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 heaping handful pumpkin flax granola
  • 1/2 cup lactose free milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large ripe banana, mashed
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Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients starting with the dry ingredients then add the wet ingredients one at a time.
  2. Heat a skillet on medium low heat and coat with a non-stick spray.
  3. Pour or scoop the batter onto the skillet, using approximately 1/4 cup for each pancake.
  4. Brown on both sides and serve hot.
  5. Serve with fresh banana slices, powdered sugar or even vanilla frosting for added sweetness!
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Pumpkin Banana Oats

Hello Lovely,

Breakfast easily gets dull for me. When I get up in the morning it's always a mad dash to pick something to wear (if I haven't already) and figure out what to cook for breakfast and lunch. I had gotten to the point where I simply rotated between girts, cream of wheat and a microwaved omelette on a slice of toast. So I recently challenged myself to begin meal prepping and planning. It made a HUGE difference. It drastically cut down my grocery bill as I was able to use the same ingredients for multiple recipes.

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I'm on a mission to change up my recipe routine to prevent getting stuck in a rut again. I'm trying to incorporate more vegetables and fresh ingredients because it's not only good for you, but also cheaper. And this recipe is so totally good for you! Of course it’s made with healthy, nourishing ingredients that will energise your day.  

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This is also the perfect recipe for Fall. It's been awhile since I actually got excited about the Fall season but this year I'm a little excited. I don't know what it is, but I guess I'm anticipating change. This Pumpkin Banana Oats breakfast is creamy, lightly sweet, and perfectly spiced for fall.  You’re going to love it. Now you're probably saying Liv, I've never seen oats look so grainy and you're right. As I was cooking this, I realised I didn't have enough oats. I remembered reading somewhere that quinoa is like the new oats for breakfast so I added it. Newsflash: QUINOA IS NOT THE NEW OATS! It was so bad I couldn't even eat it. But I had already photographed this one. I had to make it over with just the oats a few days later and I felt redeemed.

The banana sweetens this up nicely on its own, so you can totally make this without any added sugar.  I think it tastes great with a little drizzle of pure maple on top, but that is optional.  I also topped mine with extra milk and some pumpkin seeds, both of which make it even better.  I think it’d be excellent with a few extra banana slices on top, as well.  Go crazy!

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Pumpkin Banana Oat Breakfast

Makes 4 servings

Prep Time:  5 minutes

Cooking Time:  15 minutes

Total Time:  20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup oats
  • 1 cup milk (I have used almond and cashew milk, any milk will work)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 large ripe bananas, thinly sliced or mashed
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Optional Toppings:  more milk, maple syrup, pumpkin seeds

Directions:

Mix all ingredients in a medium sauce pan and stir well.  Bring to a  boil, then reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 12-15 minutes, stirring once or twice during the cooking time.  The quinoa should be cooked and creamy. Top with optional toppings, if desired.  If reheating the next day, you may need to add more milk.  Enjoy!

Mixed Berry Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

Hello Lovely,

I hate chocolate. There I said it. Don't hate me! I'm sorry. I've never enjoyed the taste of chocolate. I can tolerate chocolate cake and I love chocolate milk (it doesn't love me back though) but chocolate chips, candy.....I HATE IT! So why make this recipe you ask? Because there are people in my life who do enjoy chocolate and I wanted to do something nice for them. I wish I had taken a photo of my friend literally picking at the crumbs in the pan. If he didn't have to give it back to me, I'm sure he would've actually licked it. I'm sure that's a compliment 😊 

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I found this recipe on Baker by Nature. It's listed under breakfast. I think it would be a bit much as a breakfast item because we're very traditional here on what to eat for breakfast (grits, souse, eggs, cereal, pancakes, those sort of things). I would recommend this as a dessert that you don't have to feel guilty about! I personally swapped out the coconut oil and Greek yogurt for applesauce because it's what I had on hand.  I also used mixed berries instead of just raspberries because it's much cheaper in the store to buy a tub of berries (strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries) than to buy just strawberries or raspberries. I'm going to include the original recipe for you to follow along. Feel free to make whatever changes you want. I guarantee this dish will be a crowd pleaser wherever you take it.

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Healthy Raspberry Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

Ingredients

  • 1 and 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt (I used full-fat, but reduced fat should work)
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 VERY ripe bananas, peeled and mashed (will yield about 1 and 1/4 cups of mashed banana)
  • 1 cup raspberries, fresh or frozen (if using frozen, do not thaw first)
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (F). Line a loaf pan with parchment paper and lightly spray with non-stick spray; set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg; set aside.
  3. In a large bowl combine the sugar, oil, Greek yogurt, eggs and vanilla; beat until combined. Stir in the mashed bananas. Add in the dry ingredients and stir just until combined. Fold in the raspberries and chocolate chips (if using).
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan, smoothing the top with a spatula. Bake for 1 hour, or until a cake tester inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean. Allow bread to cool in the pan for 15 minutes before removing the loaf from the pan and transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cool, slice and serve.
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Notes

Banana bread will keep, stored in an airtight container or wrapped tightly in saran wrap, for 3 days.

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Nutrition Facts

Serving Size 1 slice

Amount Per Serving

Calories 180

% Daily Value

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

1 Minute Microwave Banana Chessecake

Hi friends and bakers!

Who wants some cheesecake?! I know I do! But let's face it, we may not always have the time to wait on a cheesecake (hence the no-bake cheesecakes). But maybe you're new to cheesecakes like me. I really have probably only made one decent cheesecake in my entire life (mostly just never had a reason or the means to). But last night, as preparation for the cheesecake I'm making tonight (Yay more cheesecake!) I decided to step my microwave mug cake game up. That's right, I said MICROWAVE CHEESECAKE! And it's just as easy as any other mug cake! There's no mixer needed (but I used one anyway because I didn't have all night).

The cheesecakes cook very differently to my other mug cakes. They are cream cheese based and delicate so they need a little more TLC when cooking. It is not difficult as long as you follow my cooking tips throughout the recipe.

The entire process (not including chilling) should take about ten minutes. It still has to refrigerate like a real cheesecake, but it's totally worth it and a lot less messy when making because it's the perfect single serve option. Feel free to add any flavour you want like Oreo cookies, raspberries, strawberries, chocolate, even sprinkles! The world is your...well, cheesecake! I hope you enjoy!

1 MINUTE MICROWAVE BANANA CHEESECAKE

Ingredients

  • 1 ounce cream cheese,at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup sour cream/yoghurt (I used banana Probiotic yoghurt)
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar (optional; I didn't use any because of the flavoured yoghurt)
  • 1 egg white, slightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon flour (prevents liquid from forming)
  • ⅓ cup (21/5oz/ 75g) crushed Oreo (or any chocolate or Graham cracker) cookies (extra for the base)
  • 2 teaspoons Mr. Boston's Eggnog

Instructions

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the cream cheese, yoghurt ( or sour cream) ,vanilla, sugar, egg whites and flour until light and fluffy. This recipe makes 3 cheesecakes.
  2. In a microwavable mug, sprinkle a layer of cookie crumbs in the bottom of your mug to create your cheesecake base. My mug is around 6oz (1 cup)
  3. Pour in your cheesecake on top
  4. CAUTION : Each mug cake takes roughly 45 seconds-1 minute. Microwave until you see A bubble in the centre, and then STOP cooking. This will take seconds, maybe 15 or more. Take it out and check it. Microwave for short intervals until you see the edge of the cheesecake firm but make sure the centre is jiggly. If it is allowed to bubble and cook further, the mixture will "break" and you'll need to start over.
  5. Make a note of the successful cooking time for your microwave. They will take around 45 seconds - 1 minute.
  6. Take out of the microwave and let cool to room temperature and then refrigerate until fully chilled, about 2 hours. If any liquid has formed, carefully pour out. Top with some whipped cream and a some cookie crumbs. Enjoy!

Peanut Butter Banana Waffles

Guys,

I decided to give my waffle iron another shot. I was all ready to break up with it after my chocolate banana waffles were a fail (the batter was too moist for well...anything. And I should've just added more flour, but my brain doesn't work that well at 5 in the morning.

So on Sunday, I stayed home from church and gave it another try. And this time, it was a delicious peanut buttery success! I ate four between Sunday and Monday and left the remaining three for my mum.

So the base for these waffles is filled with plenty of banana, along with a little bit of spice and some creamy dreamy peanut butter. The peanut butter taste is pretty prominent, while the banana is more of a subtle background thing.

They aren’t overly sweet, which is exactly how I like them because that means … more toppings!! I just wish I had some granola to crumble and use as a topping for these waffles! But plain old syrup with a side of fruit had to suffice.

 

PEANUT BUTTER BANANA WAFFLES

INGREDIENTS

For the waffles:

  • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour (if you don't have whole wheat flour, just use 2 cups all purpose)

  • ½ cup white whole wheat flour

  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

  • 1 cup well mashed banana (about 3 medium ripe bananas)

  • 1 cup milk (I use almond milk)

  • ⅓ cup creamy peanut butter 

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • ¼ cup honey

Serving ideas:

  • additional peanut butter

  • sliced bananas or other fruit

  • drizzled maple syrup or honey

  • chopped raw walnuts

  • granola

INSTRUCTIONS

  • In a large bowl, whisk together both kinds of flour, the baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, banana, milk, coconut oil, peanut butter, vanilla and honey. Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and mix until combined (the batter will be a little lumpy).

  • Preheat a waffle maker. When hot, pour the recommended amount of batter into the waffle maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Cook until golden brown. Repeat with the remaining batter.

  • Serve with desired toppings!

Blended White Christmas Tea Lattes

Hi friends!

 

I hope you had a productive weekend. I’ll admit, I’ve been a little depressed last week

since my boyfriend went back. I slept a lot, and if it weren’t for my love of the Thug

Kitchen cookbook, I wouldn’t have cooked anything or blogged either. But yesterday, I

had a breakthrough. In church, the message spoke on dealing with depression

(something I have openly shared my struggles with). We discussed the story of Elijah in

1 Kings 19.  And I was reminded that the worst thing I could do when I’m in that state is

to isolate myself. If any of you guys struggle with feelings of depression, feel free to

reach out to me if you need someone to talk to. If you’re ready to talk, trying sipping this

little lovely.

 

This is actually my second time trying this so I’ve made a few very slight adjustments.

The original recipe calls for earl grey tea, but when I smelled the Stash© Christmas Tea,

I bought that instead. Plus the smell has me longing for the 60 degree weather winter

we had. Tea and coffee can be great, but it’s so hot outside. So keep a jar of this in your

fridge for whenever you need a creamy caffeinated cool down. The tea mix will actually

keep in the fridge for at least a week.

Blended White Christmas Tea Lattes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups vanilla almond milk

  • ½ cup water

  • 2 bags Stash© Christmas Tea*

  • 1 to 2 teaspoons maple syrup or agave syrup (to taste)

  • 2 cups ice cubs (I only used 1 cup)

  • ½ banana (I used a whole banana)


Directions

1. In a small saucepan, heat the almond milk and water over medium heat until it starts to bubble around the edges. Turn off the heat and add the tea bags. Let them steep for 2-5 minutes. If you let the tea steep too long it could taste bitter, (especially if using a mint based tea, it will be too minty and overpower the creaminess) so set a timer. Take the bags out and stick all that in the fridge/freezer to cool down at least 1 ½ hours (faster in the freezer).

2. When you’re ready to drink, add the maple syrup, ice, banana and tea mix to a blender and blend until it is smooth.

*Honestly you can use chai, peppermint, earl grey, whatever you like to drink. Go crazy.

This drink makes an excellent pick me up and I strongly recommend drinking this on a day when you’re feeling down. What do you like to eat or drink when you’re feeling down? Sound off in the comment section below and don’t forget to subscribe! Here’s to a great week!


XoX,

Olivia

St. Patrick's Day Avocado Banana Smoothie

It's St. Patrick's Day, and I can't wait to get a drink in me to celebrate!

While you could make this beverage alcoholic, I kept it virgin for health reasons. (I lost four pounds!!!) About 5 more and I'll stop, I swear. I promise my fingers aren't crossed behind my back!

I am one of the laziest dieters. I exercise for about 10 minutes every 3 days, and I ended up having 2 cheat days on the weekend.

So I'm all for "juicing" the pounds away.

 

Avocado Banana Smoothie

Prep time      5 mins             Total time     5 mins                     Serves: 2


Ingredients:

½ of one medium avocado, peeled and pitted

1  banana, peeled

⅛ tsp vanilla extract

1 tbsp granulated sugar, or to taste

1 cup soy milk, approximate

6 ice cubes

Instructions:

Combine all ingredients in a blender and process until creamy and smooth (approximately 10-15 minutes), adjusting sweetness to taste and adding more milk as necessary to reach desired consistency.


(Since it's St. Patty's Day, I won't judge if you spike it a little. Just make sure the kiddies don't touch!)