I am forever making batch after batch of granola. I love topping my yogurt or cottage cheese with it, and so does my daughter! It's a family hit. I find homemade far more satisfying than what I can purchase in-store. It's also one of the simplest things you can make, doesn't require specific steps/ingredients, and is generally lower sugar than store-bought.
Although my laissez-faire method of making granola would leave me with a slightly different result every time, once I nailed this consistency, I knew I had found a winning combination that needed to be documented.
What makes this recipe so good? It's the perfect balance of crunchy, sweet and nutty. You can use it as a topping or simply grab a handful on the-go as a satisfying snack. I highly doubt it will last too long in your kitchen either!
If you’re on the hunt for your next healthy dessert idea, the search is over. These almond butter stuffed dates dipped in chocolate basically taste like a turtle and I am HERE for it.
Anytime there’s chocolate involved in my baking, my daughter, Ayla, magically appears in the kitchen ready to “help” and I honestly can’t blame her. She knows she’ll likely get a taste test along the way and may even get the lick the spoon at the end. I admire her stealthy ways
So, why do I love this recipe so much? Where to start?! The base is dates, which I tell Ayla are nature’s candy because they’re just so darn chewy and sweet. They have a low glycemic index, making them an incredible natural sweetener for dessert recipes, and are a great source of potassium.
These little guys are stuffed with almond butter, making them a satisfying treat without leaving you feeling like you need to eat the whole plate. And finally, they are dipped in a dairy-free dark chocolate and sprinkled with sea salt.
I have a very special place in my heart for dark chocolate. It is my treat of choice. I have spoiled myself for life by buying high quality, organic dark chocolate with a high cacao content. It is rich and luxurious. Pro tip: keep your chocolate in the freezer. Not only does it help you limit the amount you eat in a day, making your treat last a bit longer, but I think the cold and crunch this gives makes chocolate even better. So, my chocolate lives in the freezer, always. Give it try and let me know if you agree!
This dessert is super easy to throw together. In fact, Ayla and I made it happen in about 15 minutes yesterday while her brother napped. You just have to have some patience as it sets in the fridge. To speed up the process, you can pop the plate or cookie sheet in the freezer.
This makes the perfect hostess gift or dessert plate. It looks impressive without all the work, and who doesn’t love that?
Get the recipe details below and tag me on instagram (@lindsay.m.nutrition) if you try it!
Almond Butter Stuffed Chocolate Dates
Once your baby is old enough to eat solids, but is still lacking the chompers to eat anything and everything, baby cookies, or "teething cookies" as they're sometimes called, are a must. Personally, I like to have them on hand, if nothing else, to use as an activity. Grocery shopping and the baby gets fussy? Have a cookie. On a walk and your baby is getting bored in the stroller? Eat this cookie. Need to keep baby occupied in their highchair while you prep their meal? Cookie. They're a life safer in so many situations.
That said, they can often be filled with added sugars and lack any real nutritional value. So, I decided to come up with a cookie that was easy to gum, but also provided sustenance. Enter: my Real Food Baby Cookies. It's an activity and a snack all in one, packed with fibre, healthy fats and protein.
Just beginning your baby's journey with solid foods? Check out this Intro to Solids guide, which includes my own real-life experience of my daughter's food introduction from the perspective of a nutrition nut.
I'm no stranger to coming up with a healthy swap for a classic dish, like my quinoa breakfast bowl. Dreaming up a cookie recipe that you can feel good about giving your baby seemed like the natural move. And here's the great news: it's easy! There are only 6 ingredients and you likely have most if not all of them in your kitchen right now!
You can choose to use quick oats, or grind your oats into a flour if you'd like a smoother texture. My two and half year old loves this recipe too, so if you're cooking for older kids, you could consider mixing in some raisons or pumpkin seeds for added flavour and nutrients.
Check out the recipe below and tag me on Instagram if you give them a try! Don't forget to share them with any other mamas out there who are looking to step up their baby-friendly recipe game. Our babes deserve the best :)
We've got a pretty decent meal plan happening from Monday to Friday in our house. It isn't too strict, but gives us enough structure at the beginning of the week that we feel organized and aren't scrambling at 3pm every day, wondering what the heck we're going to feed our family. My only rule (most weeks) is I don't cook or do dishes on Friday! Easily the best house rule I've ever created. And with everything going on in the world right now, it's another great excuse to support our local restaurants. It's so relaxing at the end of the week, knowing I don't have to prep dinner for anyone (except maybe Austin, depending on what we decide to order).
My second favourite day in our meal plan is Thursday, because Thursdays we like to save for pasta night. And this particular pasta dish is my current fave in our dinner rotation! It hits my flavour profile on the dot and I end up saying "mmmm" out loud every time I eat it. It's tangy, it's savoury... it's pasta. What more could you want in a dish? I can usually pick out a star ingredient in a meal, but all of the components just come together so nicely that I simply can't pick a winner this time.
I like shrimp, but you could easily swap out your protein for chicken if seafood isn't your thing. Or, you could take it the other direction and add in scallops (but for the price, maybe save those for date night).
You can use whatever pasta you'd like, but our go-to is always a quinoa and lentil noodle. From a nutrition standpoint, when compared to white or even whole wheat pasta, it just makes more sense. Quinoa and lentil noodles provide a good hit of protein and fibre, making this meal far more satiating. Our other favourite is cauliflower linguine. However, I like to order that from Natura Market and don't always have it on hand.
My favourite way to cook shrimp is with grass-fed butter, garlic and lemon. Seriously, it's a flavour explosion and if you haven't cooked shrimp in butter... what are you even doing with your life?
You can also add in whatever vegetables you'd like, but I love the sweetness of baked tomatoes and the punch of colour the broccoli gives this dish. The mushrooms add a nice meaty texture. These three make for some pretty breezy prep. A good prep hack is to wash all of your veg in a big sink of soapy water as soon as you bring it home from the grocery store (I like to use a natural concentrate). It makes prepping meals later in the week just that much easier, because all produce is already washed and ready to go.
The finishing touches of most pasta dishes should always be a drizzle of high quality olive oil and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese. And with this dish, throw on an extra squeeze of lemon.
Trust me--you're going to want to add this dish onto next week's meal plan. It doesn't disappoint.
Lemon + Garlic Shrimp Primavera