Paleo Pumpkin Muffins

Paleo Pumpkin Muffins Recipe - Under the Monkey Bars Blog

Paleo Pumpkin Muffin Recipe - Under the Monkey Bars

I love muffins…always have. But delicious muffins without gluten, refined sugar, and dairy are few and far between. These Paleo Pumpkin Muffins though? Perfection.

I’ve been making these muffins for a few years with different variations. This version of the recipe strikes the perfect balance of ingredients. These muffins truly need a mix-in like raisins or dried cranberries so don’t skip that step. We like them best with a combination of both! 

Paleo Pumpkin Muffins travel well since they’re on the denser side. For muffins made with almond flour though, they’re more spongey than other recipes I make. The coconut flour helps to lighten it up and keeps the recipe grain free.

Even if you don’t follow the paleo diet, I’d still recommend giving this recipe a whirl. Paleo Pumpkin Muffins are high in healthy fats, fiber, and protein.  They’re a great way to vary your diet or introduce new foods to picky eaters. The monkeys aren’t big pumpkin fans, but they cheer for these muffins. Probably because you can barely taste the pumpkin.

These silicone baking cups are my new favorite for baking. I line them up on a cookie sheet instead of using a muffin tin. The muffins end up browning on the bottom, and they pop right out of the baking cups. Totally genius! And easier to freeze too. 

When you try this muffin recipe, let me know how you like it in the comments. Cómelo todo!

Paleo Pumpkin Muffins
Yields 11
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Total Time
25 min
Total Time
25 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 1/2 cups almond flour
  2. 1 tablespoon coconut flour
  3. 1 teaspoon apple pie seasoning
  4. 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  5. 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  6. 3 large pastured eggs
  7. 1/3 cup unsweetened pumpkin puree
  8. 2 tablespoons raw honey, agave or pure maple syrup
  9. 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
  10. 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  11. 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  12. 1/4 cup raisins
  13. 1/4 cup dried cranberries
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line 11 muffin cups with paper or silicone liners.
  2. If your coconut oil is solid, melt it in a small saucepan and let it cool while you measure the other ingredients.
  3. In a medium bowl whisk the almond flour, coconut flour, apple pie spice, baking soda, and salt.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, pumpkin, honey, cooled coconut oil, vinegar, and vanilla extract.
  5. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring until blended. Fold in raisins and dried cranberries.
  6. Divide batter evenly among prepared cups.
  7. Bake in preheated oven for 15 to 18 minutes until set at the centers and golden brown at the edges. Move the muffins to a cooling rack and let cool for 30 minutes (flavor enhances).
Notes
  1. - Use organic ingredients whenever possible.
  2. - Try a combination of 1 tablespoon honey + 1 tablespoon maple syrup.
  3. - We’re in love with the flavor of apple pie seasoning. If you don't have it on hand, use a combination of cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and ginger.
Adapted from Power Hungry
Adapted from Power Hungry
Under the Monkey Bars http://underthemonkeybars.com/

Perfect Popcorn

Perfect Popcorn - Under the Monkey Bars

While I don’t think corn is that good for you, I do believe that a bowl of popcorn — when made properly — is a healthy, nutritious snack. Everything in moderation, right? Today I’m sharing my recipe for Perfect Popcorn.

We all know that microwave popcorn is a big no-no. Here’s why if you need a refresher. There are some new brands that are cleaner than others, but it’s still always better to make your own. When you need a grab-and-go snack, popcorn is perfect to keep in the pantry. Buddha Bowl is our pick for the best organic, allergen free popcorn in a bag (I often find it at Marshalls for less than $3!). Check your popcorn to make sure it’s non-GMO, organic popcorn with 3 ingredients or less.

I’m sure you all know about GMOs or genetically modified organisms. The long term effects on our bodies is unknown and untested, yet allowed into our food supply by the FDA. Corn is the biggest offender since the late 1990’s when Monsanto patented a corn seed that was injected with genes drawn from bacteria to create a pesticide called Bt toxin within the corn. As a family, we choose to avoid genetically modified foods. If you haven’t already, do some research to help you decide if you should avoid GMOs.

When you make homemade popcorn, you know exactly what’s in it. I found this recipe four years ago when we were going gluten free and cutting out processed foods. It’s really fun to count to 30 with the kids when you take the kernels off the heat! I’m still surprised that almost all of the kernels pop and it never burns. I only had 6 unpopped kernels in my last batch! This really is the perfect popcorn recipe, especially with these kernels.

Popcorn is high in antioxidants and fiber, making it an easy, fun snack that’s healthy too. Adding healthy fats to your popcorn helps your body digest it better. Coconut oil is a perfect match because it’s a high smoke point oil (unlike olive oil) and it has amazing nutritional properties. The flavor is so rich that there’s no need for melted butter on top of your popcorn. Just add some salt! The girls like to shake it up with a little cinnamon, which adds extra antioxidants and lowers blood sugar levels. 

Perfect Popcorn - Under the Monkey Bars

It wouldn’t be a Friday night movie night without homemade popcorn. Last night we watched The Princess Diaries with a big bowl of what? Popcorn! We added some chocolate chips and apple pie spice. Cómelo todo!

Perfect Popcorn
Serves 4
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Total Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 tablespoons Coconut oil
  2. 1/3 cup of organic, non-GMO Popcorn kernels
  3. Sea salt to taste
  4. Cinnamon, optional
Instructions
  1. Heat the oil in a 3 quart covered saucepan on medium high heat. Add 3 popcorn kernels into the oil and cover the pan.
  2. When the kernels pop, remove them and add the rest of the 1/3 cup of popcorn kernels in an even layer. Cover, remove from heat and count to 30 seconds. This method heats the oil to the right temperature first. Waiting 30 seconds brings all of the kernels to a near-popping temperature so that when they are back on the heat, they pop at about the same time.
  3. Return the pan to the heat. The popcorn should begin popping soon, and all at once. Once the popping starts in earnest, gently shake the pan by moving it back and forth over the burner. Try to keep the lid slightly ajar to let the steam from the popcorn release (the popcorn will be drier and crisper). Once the popping slows to several seconds between pops, remove your pan from the heat, remove the lid, and dump the popcorn immediately into a wide bowl.
  4. Shake the popcorn around with some salt. Maybe a little cinnamon too!
Adapted from Simply Recipes
Adapted from Simply Recipes
Under the Monkey Bars http://underthemonkeybars.com/

Teff Almond Butter Cookies

Teff Almond Butter Cookie - Under the Monkey Bars

Teff Almond Butter Cookies - Under the Monkey Bars

Vegan cookies are the BEST kind of cookies. Why? Because you can eat the dough!! No raw eggs in this recipe. You are going to flip over these Teff Almond Butter Cookies!

No matter how healthy you are, you still need cookies! Am I right? I love, love, love cookies. These cookies are soft, rich, satisfying, and just the right balance of chip to cookie. They taste hearty and healthy like a molasses cookie but there’s no refined sugar. My favorite thing about Teff Almond Flour Cookies is that they’re really filling. I can eat two and feel satisfied (a.k.a., not devour the whole batch).

I know what you’re thinking: What is TEFF? I’d never heard of this grain until a friend sent me this cookie recipe. Teff is a whole grain from Ethiopia. It’s actually the smallest grain in the world. Teff is a nutritional powerhouse because its high in fiber, protein, calcium, and iron. So it’s super good for you and totally not a weird flour. Even Bob’s Red Mill makes teff flour so it won’t be hard to find.

As with all of my recipes, these cookies are pretty flexible and allergy friendly. Use whatever kind of nut butter you have: almond butter, peanut butter, sunbutter, etc. This Teff Almond Butter Cookie recipe is gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, soy free, refined sugar free, and safe for egg allergies! 

The monkeys made this batch so I know you can do it. Only six ingredients people! Stock up your pantry so you can make these cookies any time you want. Drop me a note in the comments or write a review if you make them. I’d love to hear from you!

Cómelo todo!

Teff Almond Butter Cookies
Yields 22
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Cook Time
13 min
Cook Time
13 min
Ingredients
  1. 1-1⁄2 cups teff flour
  2. 1⁄4 teaspoon sea salt
  3. 1 teaspoon baking soda
  4. 1 cup chunky almond butter
  5. 1 cup pure maple syrup
  6. 1⁄2 cup chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Combine flour, salt, and baking soda in one bowl.
  3. Combine almond butter and syrup in another.
  4. Pour dry ingredients over wet and blend until just combined.
  5. Fold in chocolate chips.
  6. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  7. Drop batter by heaping teaspoons onto cookie sheet.
  8. Leave cookies free-form or press down dough with tines of fork in crisscross pattern.
  9. Bake 13 minutes or until just lightly browned. Don’t overbake them!
  10. Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool.
Notes
  1. - Amount of cookies is dependent on how much batter you eat!
  2. - Don't make these cookies without parchment paper. They will stick.
Adapted from Terry Walters
Adapted from Terry Walters
Under the Monkey Bars http://underthemonkeybars.com/

Banana Bowl

sliced banana - almond butter - chia seeds - shredded coconut - mini chocolate chips

sliced banana – almond butter – chia seeds – shredded coconut – mini chocolate chips

You wouldn’t believe how many bananas I buy each week. One time, the woman scanning my groceries asked me if I had monkeys at home. Actually I do! And one of them has a birthday today. Happy 7th Birthday to my Sweet Pea! 

Back to the bananas. I’m obsessed with anything in a bowl lately, probably inspired by my favorite lunch spot. One night after we got the monkeys to bed, Don and I were both starving. We each cut up a banana and added a few things to our bowls. The Banana Bowl was born!

A Banana Bowl is a healthy banana split. It’s a quick snack for any time of day — or even breakfast if you’re in a pinch. No need to measure. Just throw in what you have, mix it up, and enjoy! It’s so easy that little monkeys can even make a Banana Bowl themselves.

Here are some ideas to customize your Banana Bowl:
– Nut butter or sunbutter
– Fresh chopped berries
– Drizzle of honey or maple syrup
– Nuts: hazelnuts, pistachios, almonds, walnuts
– Seeds: sunflower, hemp, chia, pumpkin
– Chocolate chips or a broken up chocolate bar
– Cinnamon
– Granola or Paleonola (Have you tried it?!? Mmmmm)
– Shredded coconut or Dang

I love that bananas are such a controversial fruit. It’s the sugar and carbs that give bananas a bad rap. But they are loaded with potassium, magnesium, fiber, vitamins B6, and vitamin C. And we LOVE them. Bananas are so easy to take on the go. And cheap! When we went gluten free, we joked that bananas were our new granola bars. So great to balance energy levels after a work out too.

How do you eat bananas? Try a Banana Bowl this weekend!

Banana Carrot Bread

Banana Carrot Bread Recipe from Under the Monkey Bars Blog. Gluten Free, vegetarian and paleo friendly.

I’m a big fan of baked goods. There’s just something about sitting at a coffee shop with a cup of tea and a slice of yummy banana bread. Few shops can accommodate our dietary restrictions, so I try to re-create that experience for us at home. Every week, I bake muffins, breads, bars, and/or cookies for the monkeys so that they don’t feel deprived. It’s tough enough on a grown-up to not be able to eat certain things. I can’t imagine how hard it is on the girls.

Banana Carrot Muffins recipe from Under the Monkey Bars blog. Gluten free, vegetarian and paleo friendly.

This moist Banana Carrot Bread is my own recipe that I’ve tweaked over the years. You can use it to make muffins too! It’s gluten free without weird flours like tapioca starch or xanthum gum. I use a combination of almond flour, coconut flour, and protein powder to make a bread that’s higher in fiber and protein than your typical loaf of banana bread. It will leave you feeling full and satisfied longer too.

I started making this recipe with just bananas and it was a little dry. A pastry chef once told me that gluten free baking tastes better with a little yogurt or sour cream. What a great tip! The 1/4 cup of yogurt in this recipe doesn’t bother me and it makes the batter less dense (try using an alternative if you’re allergic). Carrots also add moisture so one day I threw in some carrot pulp from my juicer and the monkeys couldn’t get enough of it. Banana Carrot Bread was born. The apple pie spice really brings all of the flavors together. You’re going to love it!

Banana Carrot Bread
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Cook Time
35 min
Cook Time
35 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 1/2 cups of blanched almond flour
  2. 3 tablespoons coconut flour
  3. 1 tablespoon flax or protein powder
  4. 1 teaspoon baking soda
  5. 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  6. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  7. 2 teaspoons apple pie seasoning
  8. 2 eggs
  9. 1 cup of carrot pulp from juicer (or grated carrots)
  10. 1 ripe mashed banana (about 1/2 cup)
  11. 1/4 cup plain yogurt
  12. 1 tablespoon raw honey
  13. 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  14. 1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
  15. Optional: 1/4 cup of mini chocolate chips or raisins
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Melt coconut oil in a small saucepan if it’s not already liquid.
  3. Line a large loaf pan with parchment paper.
  4. Whisk all dry ingredients in a medium bowl.
  5. In a separate larger bowl whisk the eggs, carrot pulp, mashed banana, yogurt, honey, syrup and melted coconut oil. Don't worry about it being lumpy; lumpy is good.
  6. Add dry ingredients to wet, combining well with a wooden spoon.
  7. Scoop batter into loaf pan. Press mini chips on top, if using.
  8. Bake for 35-38 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Notes
  1. - Use organic ingredients whenever possible.
  2. - To make muffins, bake for 18 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  3. - We’re in love with the flavor of apple pie seasoning. If you don't have it on hand, use a combination of cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and ginger.
Under the Monkey Bars http://underthemonkeybars.com/
Cómelo todo!