Thursday, 18 June 2015

Black Bean Cookies

Most of my attempts at gluten free cookies end up dry, crumbly or gritty. It doesn't seem to matter how much xanthan gum I use. I guess the problem is with the flour, because these cookies are soft, smooth, dense and fudgey! Just a little bit of almond meal and a bunch of black beans make for one delicious cookie. 

I think I've made these cookies about 4 times in the last month and a half. They pair perfectly with my afternoon coffee! They are jam packed with protein and fiber, making them a fairly healthy treat (that is if you can keep yourself from eating the whole batch)

You need to store these in the fridge or freezer. They are great to eat straight from the fridge, but I like to microwave them a bit when taking them out of the freezer. That makes the texture gooey and the chocolate chips melty. mmmm...

makes 24 cookies

1 can rinsed black beans
2 Tbsp milk (any kind)
2 Tbsp olive oil (or canola)
1.5 Tbsp natural peanut butter (can use regular or another nut/seed butter)
1 tsp vanilla
3 Tbsp ground almonds (you may substitute oat flour or gf flour blend)
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup sugar (use 1/3 cup if you want them less sweet)
1 tsp baking powder
dash salt
1/3 cup chocolate chips


In a food processor, blend beans, milk, oil, peanut butter and vanilla.
Add remaining ingredients 1 at a time  (excluding chocolate chips), blending after each addition.
Batter should be mouse-like in texture.
Fold in chocolate chips.
Drop spoonfulls on to parchment lined baking sheets.
bake at 375 for 10 mins (do not over-bake or your cookies can dry out. They will feel quite soft when done baking).
Let cool on the pan for 10 mins or so, then move to a cooling rack if you want them to cool faster
Store in fridge or freezer. (they will go bad really quickly at room temperature)

beans, milk, oil, pb and vanilla in a food processor

blend until smooth

add remaining ingredients 1 at a time, blending after each addition

fold in chocolate chips

drop spoonfulls on to a parchment lined baking sheet

bake at 375 for 10 mins

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Chocolate Cake

I can't take any kind of credit for this recipe, except maybe that I made it successfully and took some pictures. I actually made it for the adults at my son's first birthday celebration. I made some awesome no sugar "dog dog" cupcakes with a peanut butter cream cheese icing for my little guy. Although his cake wasn't gluten free (baby cake recipe here if you're interested anyway), ours was! Only 2 of us were gluten free but all the gluten-eaters were suprised at how good it was. This recipe is definitely a keeper!

Find it at A Girl Defloured 

I think the most important part of this recipe is the flour blend. You have to use one that's good for cakes. The recipe calls for cup4cup, but I used a mock cup4cup blend (Better Batter might work too??). Directions for how to make this blend can be found here. It looks kind of confusing and uses a bit of math, but if you decide how many grams you want total, you can use the percentages to find how many grams of each component should be added. You will need a kitchen scale for this. 

This recipe made enough for 2 round cake pans plus 4 cupcakes. Just watch the cupcakes to make sure they don't over cook. I iced it with chocolate whipped cream and a sprinkle of chocolate shavings

This really makes a stunning cake to present to anyone who is confined to a gluten free diet. They will love you forever! Haha.

Quinoa Blondies

I love the recipe I have for quinoa brownies, but I kind of left it at that for the longest time. I didn't realize there was a whole world of quinoa baking at my fingertips! Muffins, cakes, BLONDIES. Duh! It was staring me right in the face this whole time. I think technically blondies are supposed to have chocolate chips in them or something, but you can always melt them on top when it comes out of the oven if you require chocolate in your blondies.

Similar to my quinoa brownies, these blondies have a lighter, cake-like texture - go ahead and call it cake if you want, you have my permission ;). The recipe can be made in an 8x8 baking dish, as cupcakes or mini cupcakes like I have shown in the pictures. Simply adjust the baking time accordingly. Some similar recipes I've seen (thank you, pinterest) will even double the recipe, cook in round pans and make a layer cake with some kind of delectable frosting. 

Oh, and as an added bonus, these blondies contain coconut flour! Something I am trying to use and understand a bit more. I get mine from the bulk barn. 

makes an 8x8 baking dish or about 20 mini cupcakes

3 Tbsp Milk (any variety)
1 tsp Vanilla
2 Eggs
1/4 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4 cup Canola Oil (or melted coconut oil or butter)
1 cup Cooked Quinoa
1/2 cup Sugar
3 Tbsp Coconut Flour
3/4 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Baking Soda
1/4 tsp Salt


In food processor or strong blender, blend milk, eggs, vinegar, vanilla and quinoa.
Mix dry ingredients together in a separate bowl.
Add dry mixture to food processor and blend with the wet ingredients. 
Pour into greased or parchment lined 8x8 baking dish
or greased/nonstick mini muffin cups.
Bake at 350 until edges start to brown and the middle is set - 25-30 mins for a dish and 12-15 for mini muffins. 

before baking

after baking 

I will try to get a picture of the blondies in the pan next time I make them. Thanks for stopping by! Hope you enjoy :)

Friday, 13 February 2015

Brownie Cookies

This is another great coconut flour recipe. It makes a nice small batch of semi-healthy cookies. The banana replaces butter and some of the sugar, and you can replace the sugar with honey or another kind of sweetener.

I find that these cookies have the best texture the day they are made, but they are still pretty good a few days old. Just store them in a sealed container at room temperature (They can be frozen but the texture isn't quite the same). This recipe only makes a dozen or so cookies, so chances are you won't have any leftovers!

makes 12-14 cookies

1/3 cup Coconut Flour
1/4 cup Cocoa Powder
1/4 cup Sugar (or honey or sweetener of your choice)
1 tsp Baking Powder
pinch salt
1 Ripe Banana
2 Eggs
1 tsp Vanilla
1/4 cup Chocolate Chips 


Mash banana in a bowl.
Beat in eggs and vanilla.
In a different bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking powder and salt.
Combine the 2 bowls and stir well.
Stir in chocolate chips.
Drop tablespoons of dough on parchment lined baking sheet.
Bake at 350 for about 15 mins. 

Cookie dough

Drop heaping tablespoons on parchment lined sheet

Bake at 350 for around 15 mins

Let cool and enjoy

Recipe based on this recipe at Home to Heather

Friday, 24 October 2014

Pumpkin Spice Donut Holes

I've been experimenting a bit with coconut flour lately. I really like it (and it's pretty healthy), but it's very different from other flours and starches. It really sucks up liquid, and will continue to absorb for a few minutes after mixing, so it's a good idea to let your dough rest for 5 minutes or so before forming the donuts, cookies, or whatever you are making.

Coconut flour will give your baking a sweet, coconutty flavour and a dense texture. Even a few tablespoons can have a big impact on a recipe. I used some coconut flour in a pumpkin scone recipe the other day. It was alright, but needs some more work before I'm happy with it. 

The flour is fairly expensive compared to other GF flours, but you don't usually use much in a recipe. I buy my coconut flour at the bulk barn, but you should be able to find it in any health food store. 

makes 18 donut holes

1/2 cup Coconut Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
Pinch of Salt
1/2 cup Sugar
2 Eggs
3 Tbsp Oil
1/4 cup Pumpkin Puree (or substitute applesauce)
1 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice (or apple pie spice or cinnamon and nutmeg)
1 tsp Vanilla
1-2 Tbsp Milk if needed (I used homemade pumpkin puree which has a little more liquid than the canned stuff)
1 tsp cinnamon and 2 Tbsp sugar for rolling donuts in 


Combine wet (except milk) and dry ingredients separately and mix together. Mix  in milk if needed.
Let dough rest for 5 minutes.
Make 1 1/2 inch balls and roll in cinnamon and sugar.
Place dough balls in mini muffin tins (you could probably just used a baking pan because they don't really spread out)
Bake at 350 for 14-16 minutes (until fairly firm)
Let cool and enjoy!

* You could also make a glaze for the donuts after baking instead of rolling in cinnamon and sugar.

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Pumpkin Cornbread Muffins

Gluten Free Pumpkin Cornbread Muffins
It's pumpkin season and I am busy adding pumpkin to some of my favourite recipes. I love this version of cornbread muffins. The pumpkin puree adds moisture and the spices create a warm, festive flavour. Enjoy slathered with butter and honey and along side stew, soup or chili.

Mini Pumpkin Cornbread Muffins

We love them as mini muffins and I always make extra to freeze or take with leftovers for lunch. You can use the batter to make pumpkin cornbread pancakes too! (may need more milk)

makes 12 muffins

1/3 cup Sugar
1/3 cup Oil
1/2 cup Pumpkin (or squash) Puree (I use home made but store bought works)
1/3 cup milk 
2 Eggs
1/2 cup Cornmeal
1/2 cup Corn Flour (or use more cornmeal)
1 cup Rice Flour (or your favourite GF flour blend)
1 Tbsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Salt
3/4 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice 


Mix together wet and dry ingredients separately, then combine.
Spread batter equally between 12 muffin tins lined with papers (or use mini muffin tins)
Bake at 350 for around 15 mins (more like 10 mins for mini muffins)
Serve warm with butter and honey or freeze for later once cool.

Not a pumpkin fan? Try my regular cornbread muffins!

Friday, 10 October 2014

Curried Squash Soup

Gluten Free Curried Squash Soup
We love squash in our house. I like it roasted with butter, brown sugar and pumpkin pie spice but my husband prefers it slathered in butter alone. Our little guy, who is just starting solids, is a big fan of squash too. My favourite squash to eat on its own is acorn, but butternut is a close second. For soup, however, butternut squash is the way to go!

This soup is creamy, nutty and sweet with a hint of curry spice and coconut milk. Roasting the veggies brings out a great depth of flavour, but if you don't have the time you could chop them up raw and cook them in the soup instead.

serves 3-4 ppl

1 medium Butternut Squash (2-3lbs)
1 Onion
1/2 Head of Garlic
3 cups Vegetable or Chicken Broth (make sure it's GF!)
1 tsp Brown Sugar
1 1/2 tsp Indian Curry Powder (or sub Thai Curry Paste for a different flavour)
1/2 tsp Oregano
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
Salt and Pepper to taste
2 Tbsp Lemon Juice (or substitute 1 chopped granny smith apple - add in with squash)
1/2 cup Coconut Milk
Plain Yogurt (or sour cream) and Parsley as a garnish


Cut squash in half lengthwise and scrape out seeds and fibres with a spoon.
Peel the onion and cut into quarters
Wrap the half head garlic in tin foil
Roast squash cut side down on a foil lined roasting pan along with onion and garlic for 45-50 mins at 350.
When cooked, scrape out squash and squeeze out garlic into a medium pot with onion and 2 cups of broth.
Using a hand/stick blender, puree until smooth. (or you can blend in a food processor)
Add remaining broth, coconut milk and seasonings (not lemon juice) and simmer for 10-20 mins, stirring occasionally.
Stir in lemon juice at the end and season to taste.
Serve hot with parsley and yogurt/sour cream.

Cut and remove seeds from squash (you only need one)
Roast squash, onion and garlic (garlic is missing from picture)

Combine roasted veggies in a pot
Add 2 cups of stock and blend until smooth
Add remaining broth, coconut milk and seasonings and simmer for 10-20 mins 
Garnish with yogurt/sour cream and parsley if desired