Category Archives: Snacks and Treats

Banana Quinoa Muffins

This is a great muffin option when you have extra ripe bananas lying around. And, the quinoa flakes make a nice substitute for oatmeal. (The gluten in oatmeal can be a problem for many who are affected by wheat gluten.)

These muffins used to be a favorite in our house, but we needed a break. Now that my son is older, we modified them to make them more enticing. He can even make them himself. . . . who can resist a muffin when chocolate chips are added? Continue reading

Hazelnut Thumbprint Cookies

A new twist on an old holiday favorite. . . I took this classic recipe and made it my own. If you want to take some of your favorite recipes, especially those you loved as a child, and make a healthier option that is gluten-free, dairy-free and GMO-free, use this post to learn how. It is a matter of making the correct substitutions.

Hazelnut Thumbprint Cookies 

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Popped Sorghum – A Great Popcorn Alternative

I finally found a substitute for popcorn!  Popped sorghum!!!

In my family, we have been corn-free for several years now. Although corn is inherently gluten-free, we feel better without it. I believe it is due, in part, to the fact that much of the corn in the United States is genetically modified (GM). Even what is deemed “organic” is often tainted, since corn can easily be cross pollinated across different farms and fields. (A GMO corn crop can taint a non-GMO crop up to 15 miles away.)

The proteins in corn are also hard to digest. That is why you tend to see pieces of your corn on the cob come out the other end the next day. 🙂

The one time we splurge is when it is corn season in Tennessee. When I can get freshly picked sweet corn on the cob from a local organic farmer that I trust, we eat it a few times during the season.

Otherwise, we do not miss it much. We have found substitutes like bean chips instead of corn chips and ground millet instead of corn meal. However, the popcorn was hard to reproduce, until now.

Surprisingly, popped sorghum grains tastes a lot like popcorn. It is prepared a little differently than popcorn and the kernels are smaller, but it is worth making it when you need a popped treat. (Do not use an air popper.)

Here is how I did it: Continue reading

Tips for Baking Healthy, Gluten-Free, and Dairy-Free With Links to Substitute Ingredients

I finally figured out what I have been doing wrong all these years. I love to take classic dessert recipes and convert them into healthy gluten-free and dairy-free options. (That means GMO-free too.) But, it was not until more recently that I figured out a few secrets that took my creations to a new level.

Growing up, I was the baker in the family. Being the only girl in a family of seven, I did not have much competition, so it was often me who made the deserts and birthday cakes. Back then, to make a recipe healthier meant using whole wheat flour instead of white flour and replacing sugar with honey. I loved it.

My Experiments

Since going gluten-free and dairy-free about seven years ago, my baking wonders have not always been so wonderful. Replacing dairy ingredients with coconut versions was not that difficult, especially with all the new options that have come out the last few years. However, replacing the flour has been a little more challenging, especially when using natural sweeteners.

I have experimented will all sorts of flours. In the past, I strictly used rice flour (which is inherently gluten-free) and replaced all the required flour in a recipe with rice flour. However, the resulting treat was always too crumbly. I also tried other gluten-free flours like garbanzo bean flour and quinoa flakes without much difference.

The newest trend in gluten-free baking is to add Continue reading

Gluten-free Chocolate Chip Cookie

These are the cookies we will be leaving out for Santa this Christmas Eve. I think I finally created a chocolate chip cookie recipe that is gluten-free and good tasting – no small feat since we have tried many recipes over the years. They are liked by friends and family alike. . . and hopefully Santa too. Try them and see if you agree!

This recipe uses rapadura sugar, which is less processed than other other sugars. It is made from unrefined cane sugar so it is full of vitamins and minerals, including iron. Because the color is similar to brown sugar, the cookies tend to bake darker overall. That is why I use white rice flour instead brown rice flour. (I also sometimes add some white cane sugar for the same reason.)

The chocolate chips I use are made by Equal Exchange. (Be sure to check the link below). These chips have only three ingredients, are all organic, contain no GMOs (like soy lecithin), and taste great. (They are available semi-sweet and bittersweet.) Continue reading

Homemade Marshmallows

I recently purchased my first container of bovine gelatin. Gelatin (for those of you who are not vegetarian) is a great source of collagen and amino acids such as glycine and proline. It provides many health benefits such as supporting skin, hair and nail growth, joint health and recovery, and muscle building. It can also strengthen the immune system and provide digestive support. (For some people, the glycine in the gelatin may aggravate existing health problems, especially if you are sensitive to oxalates and/or sulfur.)

For most, bovine gelatin is a great nutrient-dense food. Continue reading