Feels Like a Cheat Dip

Gluten Free/Sugar Free/Soy Free/Nut free option

THM:S dessert

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“Hi, my name is Aubree and I’m addicted to fat…”

And all of my fellow fat addicts said….”Hi Aubree”

Okay, seriously though, who doesn’t like dipping food into their favorite fattening condiment or dip at some time? I especially love it at this time of year when every weekend we seem to have Football parties or Halloween parties or family Thanksgiving, etc. Ketchup, ranch, salsa, yogurt, humus, guacamole, fruit dip, whatever I can get my hands on! Well, my fellow fat dippers, I have been making this for many months now and just haven’t found the time to publish it, but that changes today! This is recipe is still healthy as long as you don’t over-do it! It’s low-carb, goes well with fruit, and can also be used as a sugar-free ice cream. I frequently use it for dipping strawberries, but my main purpose in creating this is to freeze it to make sugar-free ice cream. Let’s face it, ice cream tops it all! My fellow THMers – this is an S dessert! This is the first Trim Healthy Mama compatible dessert that I have made over and over because it tastes like a cheat! Watch yourself though – this makes about 4-6 servings – don’t eat the whole thing in one sitting!

Ingredients:

2 cups Heavy Whipping Cream

1 cup almond milk (use cow milk if need nut free)

8 oz. 1/3 less fat Cream Cheese or Neufchâtel Cheese

2 Tbs. cocoa pwd.

1-2 scoops THM Protein Powder or THM Integral Collagen. 2 scoops makes the dip thicker. (If you like a flavored protein powder I have also used Bodylogix Chocolate Protein powder and it is on plan.)

1 tbs. vanilla extract

1 tbs. caramel extract (feel free to sub in a different extract or flavor if you don’t like caramel)

6 tbs. Truvia or THM Super Sweet(adjust to taste)

Salt to taste ( I use a few shakes)

Directions:

Add all ingredients to a high-powered blender, such as a Ninja or Vitamix. You can use a regular blender, but just might have to spend more time blending it. Blend until smooth. I find that if you add the Cream Cheese last it helps to keep the powders from flying up and getting caught in the top of the blender.

 

Start with the liquids and the powders.
Start with the liquids and the powders.
Add the Cream Cheese last.
Add the Cream Cheese last.

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Pour into any container for a dip and then enjoy!

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To make the ice cream: Pour the remaining dip into several freezer safe containers. I find that the Truvia containers are the perfect size! Place in the freezer, making sure they are upright and sealed properly.  I leave mine in the freezer overnight. It should be frozen within a few hours, though. Then the next day, I pack it with my lunch. It sits in the fridge for a couple hours and thaws slowly and it’s ready for me by snack time – around 9:30 or 10. Yes, I eat ice cream in the morning! You can, too!

I hope that you enjoy this great recipe as dip or ice cream and can share it with friends and family this wonderful Fall season! Try subbing in some pumpkin spice or canned pumpkin in place of cocoa and caramel and you may just have a new pumpkin favorite!

Blessings,

Aubree

“A person can do nothing better than to eat and drink and find satisfaction in their own toil. This, too, I see, is from the hand of God, for without him, who can eat or find enjoyment?”

Ecclesiastes 2:24-25

Guacamole – THM – S

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Hey guys,

Who else out there is a big Mexican food fan? Guacamole is one of those big comfort foods for me. I have loved a few different recipes for years but have never attempted to make up my own recipe. I have to admit, that this recipe was a team effort. My hubby and I brainstormed and tested this one several times (which was a bonus – more food for us!) He loves it with sea salt and mashing it all up with a fork, but keeping it chunky. I love it fully blended in a blender to make it nice and smooth, sometimes with cottage cheese, and always with Himalayan pink salt. Try both!

Guacamole – THM – S – Gluten free with dairy free option
2 med avocadoes
3 drops lime oil (or the juice of one or two limes if you do not have lime essential oil)
1/4c chopped onion
1/2c mild salsa
1-2tsp sea salt or Himilayan pink salt (to taste)
Optional: Add a little cottage cheese to taste for more protein and to make it a little creamier. I add this for me, but I make a dairy free option for my son with no cottage cheese and he loves it! Also a few sprigs of Cilantro make a big difference if you are a mexican food fan!

Choosing a ripe, but not too ripe Avocado can get tricky, but you will learn how they feel after a few attempts. They are slightly soft when ripe, so if you purchase them a day or two ahead of time, choose some that are still hard and need a couple of days to ripen!

Perfectly ripe Avocado!
Perfectly ripe Avocado! Slice the Avocado in half going around the pit, then pull apart. Save the pit, though – it keeps the guacamole fresher in the fridge!
Squeezing out the goodness!
Squeezing out the goodness! You don’t need a spoon, just use the skin to squeeze out the good stuff right into your blender!
All ready to blend up in the Ninja! Hiya!
All ready to blend up in the Ninja! Hiya!

If you are following the Trim Healthy Mama plan, make sure that you choose a no sugar added salsa if you are not making your own.  We like Pace mild salsa because it is Gluten free and two of us in my family have to eat Gluten free.
Mix all well either in a blender for a very creamy texture or just mashed in a bowl with a fork if you prefer it lumpy. Enjoy with veggies (we love green and yellow peppers with it), the cheese chips approved on the THM plan, or another plan approved cracker or chip for an S setting. Serves 2-3 people and try to eat it up within 1-2 days to keep it fresh!

If you are not familiar with Trim Healthy Mama and would like to find out more, please see my review at: Trim Healthy Mama: Death to Dieting and visit my affiliate link to Trim Healthy Mama found in that post.

 

 

Ode de Skunk

Introducing Guest Blogger for Loving the Journey and my beloved sister, Kelsey Pray!

Hello dear readers of Loving the Journey! My sister, Aubree, asked me to guest blog this week and I happily accepted! We both grew up with a love for writing and expressing ourselves in some creative way. In fact Aubree was my first inspiration when it came to writing music. I am a Singer/songwriter and Music teacher. From 2009-2014 I was a touring and performing musician. You can check out my blog. Dear Indie Girl, here. I remember starting to write because Aubree was writing songs and she wanted me to sing with her. And being the blessed copycat I was in those days, I wanted to do everything I saw my older sister doing!

In October 2012 after my second album release and tour of my solo career, I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis. In fact the doctor told me it could be Colitis or Crohns. They caught it early so sometimes they can’t tell which is which until it gets bad enough.

The doctor sent me home with some samples to try to see if it improved my symptoms which at the time were all varieties of disgusting. I’d bloat up so much that it would look like I was a couple of months pregnant. This would usually accompany abdominal pains, gas, diarrhea, nausea, and constipation. Yes, you can have diarrhea and constipation at the same time! Which is loads of fun when you’re on tour, let me tell you!

Anyway, that night I tried the medication for the first time. In the instructions that came with this drug that is meant to help deal with digestion problems, oddly one of the side effects listed is… digestion problems. I read carefully with furrowed brow the words “May make symptoms worse”. Oh great. That’s just what I need, I thought.

The next morning as my husband rolled over to give me a morning kiss and snuggle, he was met with a skunk smell wafting from under the sheets. I awoke to “THAT IS NOT NORMAL!”

Confused and disoriented, I thought, Why does my pillow smell like a skunk?
“Was that me?!!!” I asked looking at James.
“It wasn’t me and it’s coming from under the covers.”
“I’m never taking those pills again.”

That was the moment I decided I was going to seek treatment for UC with diet and natural medicine. I’d like to tell you that I never had problems again, but that would be a lie. It’s been a long road to healing. BUT, I will tell you that I never woke up with skunk gas again. And I think that’s saying something.

So I poured myself into research to find an Elimination diet to determine my trigger foods with the help of my nurse mother-in-law. We found an extensive elimination diet from http://www.nourishingmeals.com/. Ali Segersten and Tom Malterre wrote a great book called The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook. They guide the reader through whole food basics and in the back of the book is the elimination diet.

wholelifenutritioncookbook

This was an eye opening experience. At the end of the elimination diet I discovered that my system was so sensitive that most food I reintroduced brought back my symptoms within a day. So I continued researching.

This is when I discovered the GAPS diet. Also very extensive, but for those sufferers of autoimmune diseases who don’t want to be on medication the rest of their lives, well worth it!

The GAPS diet is, like I mentioned, for autoimmune diseases like Crohns, Colitis, and even Autism! In fact the author of the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS), Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride created this diet to help her son who was Autistic. That’s right. WAS Autistic. After this extensive healing process, her son functions as a normal person!

Gut and Psychology Syndrome

So, what is the GAPS diet? It is a diet that eliminates processed foods, all forms of sugar except raw organic honey, and uses old-fashioned cooking methods like homemade broth and soups along with a high quality probiotic to heal the gut. The main concept being, that most illness starts in the gut. Including diseases that affect brain function (Autism, Schizophrenia, and more). You can find a detailed explanation on the GAPS website, http://gapsdiet.com/.

For one and a half years I was on the GAPS diet and fought through much temptation, and many set backs to stick to the plan. I am happy to say that now, two years later, I am off the GAPS diet because I don’t need it anymore. My digestion is better than ever, and I am able to add more and more varieties of food back into my diet. I can even go out to eat on occasion without having a reaction! If you’ve suffered from food sensitivities and allergies, you know how exciting that is!

In my experience with food sensitivities, I have more than a few nuggets of wisdom to pass on, but here are the basics:

  • Whenever possible, buy local organic food. Develop a relationship with local farmers who sell at Farmer’s Markets in your area. Ask them any and all questions about their food, so you’re sure you know what you’re eating.
  • Avoid processed, sugary foods like the plague. Even gluten-free food that is processed is not necessarily healthy. It’s just made without gluten which is a step in the right direction, but will not help you lose weight or see the bigger health benefits you may be looking for. The best and most nutritious gluten-free food is homemade from scratch.
  • Make real food from scratch. It’s ALWAYS the healthiest and least expensive option for you and your family.
  • Probiotics are your friend! The best sources are food based. You can find them in fermented foods like yogurt, kimchi, and sauerkraut. Eat them daily.
  • Avoid fad diets. They can help you to lose a lot of weight but don’t educate you on truly healthy habits. As soon as you go off the diet you will gain all the weight back and then some (The GAPS diet is not a weight loss program nor a fad diet. No one should try the GAPS diet unless they are truly sick and need intense healing).
  • Find a Naturopath you can trust. My Naturopath, Kathryn Doran-Fisher, ND, at Elder & Sage in Grand Rapids, MI was my biggest cheerleader (next to my husband) and guide through my experience with the GAPS diet. She is GAPS certified so she knew how to walk me through it and help me with any set backs (and there were a few). I would totally recommend finding a Naturopath who will listen to you and help you find the right diet and supplements to help you find true healing.
  • Prayer. “And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us.” 1 John 5:14. This is not placed last on the list because it is least important, but because it is most important and should be a first, middle, and last resort to any illness or problem.

That’s it! I hope you enjoyed my ramblings about skunk gas and whole foods, and I pray you find healthy options that work for you and your family!

You can check out my blog at www.dearindiegirl.wordpress.com 

Kelsey Pray

Frozen Peanut Butter Cups – Gluten Free – Dairy Free

Valentines Day is coming up! This is the perfect time of year for Chocolate and peanut butter combos! I am a professed chocolate addict and this time of year is hard for me because while I want to eat chocolates, I don’t want the extra poundage. Here’s a recipe that has no added sugar and is allergen friendly. It is still high in fat but they are healthy fats, so enjoy a few in moderation with no guilt!

Anbody else out there have some food allergies or have to cook for kids with allergies? I will post some recipes that I find that will help you out. On a rare occasion I may have something that I came up with, but don’t count on it:) I usually get my ideas from pinterest, friends or family :). I have a gluten sensitivity and my boys have various allergies: dairy, nuts, eggs, soy, wheat, and coddfish. Dinner is an adventure at our house:) Enjoy!

First Recipe: I did not create these peanut butter cups – but they are my favorite! My friend, Angela Cummings, gave me the recipe and thinks she may have found it on Pinterest. This looks like a similar one that uses stevia instead of honey: Healthy PB cups

I have seen a similar recipe in the Trim Healthy Mama collection that uses just chocolate – no Peanut Butter – they are called “Skinny Chocolate” and I will be trying those soon!

Double "Peanut Butter" Cups! These are so easy to make, and they taste amazing - you can use peanut butter or any nut butter for these, along with coconut oil, maple syrup and/or stevia, and cocoa powder. They're the texture of fudge and keep well in the fridge or freezer---awesome with coffee!

Frozen Peanut Butter Cups: Imagine a cold Peanut Butter cup that melts in your mouth:)

Allergy notes:Gluten free – can make dairy free and possibly nut free:

Supplies you will need: tablespoon measuring spoon, measuring cups, natural peanut butter (I like JIF Natural Honey Peanut Butter because it is Gluten Free – could use sunbutter if have allergy to nuts), coconut oil, butter or coconut butter, natural honey, regular unsweetened cocoa powder, sea salt, some EV Olive Oil spray, mini muffin pans, mini muffin cups, 2 sauce pans. This recipe makes about 20-22. I usually double the peanut butter layer and triple the chocolate layer just because I seem to run our of the chocolate faster. You can tweak it to your liking!

Peanut butter layer: 1/4 c. Coconut oil, 3/4 c. Peanut butter, 2 tbsp honey.

Melt coconut oil in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Turn off heat and stir in peanut butter and honey. (Do not try to use “PB2” (defatted peanut butter) to lower the fat content – I have tried this and it does not work well!)

Line muffin tins, put the peanut butter mixture into cups and put in freezer until set ~10 min.

Chocolate layer: 2 tbsp coconut oil, 2tbsp butter (use coconut butter or olive oil butter to make dairy free), 2 tbsp cocoa powder, and 2 tbsp honey.  I also put just a little sea salt on top once I pour the chocolate layer on.

Melt the coconut oil and butter in small saucepan over low heat.  Turn off heat and stir in cocoa powder and honey.

Remove peanut butter cups from freezer and spoon chocolate mixture on top.  Sprinkle with sea salt if you like (trust me – the sea salt makes this dessert gourmet!)

Place back in the freezer, ready to eat in about 10-15 minutes or transfer to Tupperware and store in freezer. Can store in your fridge temporarily if need be.

These are a hit at parties with finger foods – gluten free/dairy free foodies will love these because they do not get to have this kind of yumminess on a regular basis!

Enjoy and Happy Valentine’s Day!

Aubree