1 3/4 cups flour (I used a combination of a gluten free flour blend and brown rice flour)
1 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup mashed ripe banana (about 2- 3 bananas)
1 tbsp melted coconut oil
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup of apple sauce (my secret ingredient instead of an egg! I’ll tell you why after the directions…)
1/4 cup Greek yogurt (for a dairy- free version, swap in 1/4 coconut yogurt or another 1/4 cup of apple sauce)
2 tbsp coconut milk
3/4 cup strawberries, diced
1/2 cup unsweetened dried coconut
2 tbsp chia seeds
Fresh strawberry slices
Unsweetened dried coconut
And as for that secret ingredient: why apple sauce?
When I first started baking gluten and dairy free recipes, I also tried some alternatives for eggs out of curiosity and apple sauce has become a staple in some of my sweet recipes as an egg substitute: simply swap in 1/2 cup of apple sauce for each egg the recipe calls for. And if you’ve followed the blog for a while, you know that our family is a fan of Love Child Organics and their awesome organic food options for littles. Well, guess what I used in this recipe? A pouch of their apple puree! One pouch is equal to almost half a cup, so they work perfectly as a pre- measured ingredient (lol can I consider that a #momwin? 😉 )
I love that I can trust the quality of their ingredients and that their pouches are an allergy- friendly option, free from dairy, gluten, nuts, and absolutely no additives/ fillers. If you look on the back of the pouch I’m talking about there is one ingredient: organic apples. Don’t you wish more food labels were simple like that? And if you have a hard time getting your kids to eat fruits and veggies, their pouches are a great option for babies just starting out on solids and for older kids as well (Ari & Liam practically pounced on the pouches I had on hand for these photos- safe to say they’re a hit with the kids!). If you want to learn more about this awesome company, I’ll share more at the end of this post, but for now let’s get back to baking!!!
To see the full selection of products from LCO & learn more about the company, visit their website.
While my kids are still too young for her camps, I was excited to learn about what she is doing to teach families and kids about food and nutrition. Her goal is to get everyone in the family interested and engaged with food while teaching them about how food can contribute to improved overall health. And if this wasn’t cool enough, as part of her goal to make good food accessible to everyone, Cristel donates a portion of cooking camp proceeds to a food- related organization every year (learn more about that here).
While Cristel and Ari measured and mixed ingredients, I snapped away to get some photos of the them working on their tasty creations. The recipe Cristel made with Ari is below (thanks to Cristel for sharing!) along with some info about Cristel’s nutritional services. And I couldn’t wrap up my intro without making this final note: I had been looking forward to this collaboration given our family’s relationship with food, but meeting Cristel got me even more excited and pumped up. Her warmth and passion are contagious. It’s obvious she genuinely loves what she does and sharing her knowledge to help others brings her a joy that comes with loving what you do. It was a real pleasure working with her and I hope there will be more chances to work together to share about food and nutrition with TPB readers. I hope you enjoy this post as much as we did working on it. Thank you again Cristel for such a fun foodie experience!
No- Bake Oat Balls
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup nut or non- nut smooth butter (we made ours with sunflower seed butter)
1/4 cup applesauce
4 tbsp honey or agave
1 tsp vanilla
Choose 3 add- ons of the following (add 1/2 cup of each)
mini chocolate chips: can be dark, milk, or white)
chopped dried fruit: raisins, cranberries, apricots, or dates
nuts or seeds: almonds, walnuts, pecans, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds
ground flax seed
unsweetened coconut (ground or shredded)
Mix all ingredients together and roll into mini balls.
– if the mixture is too sticky, add more of the nut/ non- nut butter and/ or cocoa powder
– if it’s not holding together, add nut/ non- nut butter, applesauce, and/ or honey
Tip: prior to adding a sticky ingredient such as honey, spray the measuring cups/ spoons with oil to prevent from sticking
Optional other add- ons
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp of another extract of choice
3 tbsp of wheat germ
3 tbsp of chia seeds
spices of choice: cinnamon, nutmeg, ground ginger
Cristel’s goal with nutriFoodie is to bring basics back into the kitchen with meals the whole family will enjoy that are nutritious and delicious; to get everyone in the family involved with cooking and improve their relationship with food to help positively impact overall health and wellbeing. She is passionate about helping people make healthy choices and educating kids about nutrition. To help families enjoy cooking and food, Cristel offers a range of services from nutrition assessments and cooking demos to kid’s cooking camps. To see the full list of services available such as family cooking classes and grocery tours, visit the nutriFoodie website.
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