While visiting K’s sister in Spokane, who as K mentioned is a fantastic and deliciously inventive cook, we got a few other tasty recipes that are fast becoming staples for us. These are healthier versions of what we were previously eating.
This recipe is made the night before and is immediately ready to eat in the morning. It has replaced instant oatmeal and cold cereals for us, as even the healthiest options left something to be desired. Want to know something funny? A few nights now we’ve lain in bed saying to each other, “mmm, I can’t wait for overnight oats in the morning!”
1 banana – sliced
1 cup frozen / fresh blueberries
(or 2 cups of any fruit you like (x ½ if dried), instead of the above fruit)
2 Tbsp ground flax meal or chia seeds (this will help bind = very important!)
¼ – ½ cup nuts or seeds of your choice (our favorite is pumpkin seeds)
2 – 4 Tbsp protein powder (optional, but you might want to add sweetener if not using) – we skip this and add one Tbsp sugar instead
½ tsp salt (we omit this but it may be because we realized the pumpkin seeds we happened to get already had a bit of salt added and it was just too much otherwise)
2 cups milk or milk alternative (we use almond milk)
- Mix up in bowl (or 2 jars), cover, and refrigerate overnight or even up to a couple of days
- Serves 2 – but sometimes we make a double recipe and thus have breakfast ready for two days
How it looks in the morning when it has had time to set:
Waffles / Pancakes
Has replaced frozen waffles and white flour recipes / pre-made mixes for us.
¾ cup whole wheat flour, buckwheat flour, whatever flour
2 – 4 Tbsp protein powder (we don’t have any of this; we added 1 Tbsp sugar instead)
¼ cup brown rice flour – or extra flour from above
½ tsp salt
1 Tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot powder
1 tsp baking powder
¾ – 1 ¼ cup milk or milk alternative
1 banana or ½ cup applesauce (reco: blend banana with milk – or mash really well)
- Mix dry ingredients separately and add wet.
- Add more milk to desired thickness (waffle batter is usually best thicker)
- Cook as you usually do and slather with nut butter, syrup, fruit, etc!
- If making chocolate variety, use chocolate protein powder plus 2 Tbsp cocoa powder
Avocado Veggie Pasta
Though we didn’t get this recipe directly, we tried to recreate a dish we’d eaten at J & J’s place. The sauce was where we improvised most based on the ingredients we had and not aiming for vegan as J’s original was. Here is what we concocted:
¾ to 1 cup of noodles per person
1 head of broccoli
1 head of cauliflower
1 bundle of kale
Salt / pepper
- Boil noodles and drain, leaving a bit of the pasta water
- Cut, wash, and lightly touch up the broccoli, cauliflower, and kale with a bit of oil, then place on a baking sheet and roast in the oven (whatever didn’t fit on our baking sheets we didn’t add any oil to and put in the fridge to be saved for later use)
- To make the sauce, I simply mashed everything in a bowl until a pretty good consistency emerged, but using a blender would be much simpler. In the end we decided that a single avocado rather than two may have done the trick, or something additional should be added to soften the creaminess of the sauce just a bit, maybe some plain yogurt or almond milk. The sauce is really just the avocados, a bit of sour cream, and lemon juice, cilantro, garlic, salt, and pepper to taste.
- Combine everything until evenly mixed and coated with the sauce
No Bake Energy Bars
With all of the hiking we do, we usually like to take some type of granola bars along as snacks. Rather than single-handedly funding the Nature Valley enterprise, we had considered attempting to make our own at some point. J made some great energy bars that included dates and required the use of a blender. Since we don’t have one on this trip, in the meantime I have made some energy bars with other ingredients we had handy (which are undoubtedly also a lot less healthy than the date version). I’ve pretty much improvised and have adjusted the exact amount of ingredients each time, but I’ve listed some approximations (yeah, they’re pretty vague; I may not be the best at recipe writing… 🙂 ).
Old fashioned oats, ~2 cups
Craisins, whatever feels right
Peanut Butter, ~3/4 cup
Honey, if desired – just a little
Chocolate Coconut Bars
Old fashioned oats, ~2 cups
Unsweetened shredded coconut, whatever feels right
Unsweetened cocoa powder, 1/8 cup or so I think
Peanut Butter, ~3/4 cup
Maple Syrup, if desired – just a little
*The trick is to adjust the ingredients to get the desired consistency, which should allow you to press the mixture into a pan, and have it not turn out too crumbly or too goopy after it is refrigerated for awhile. Take the above ingredients and mix and match, omit or add, as you like. You can add things like various nuts or seeds, applesauce, other fruit, chocolate chips, etc.
- Mix all ingredients together in a bowl
- Pour into a pan (this amount seems to make only about 3/4 of a ~8×12″ pan – double/triple recipe as you’d like and depending on pan size / desired thickness) and spread evenly, pressing firmly to pat it down
- Place in fridge to set
- Cut into individual bars
Cut into individual bars:
We’re looking forward to trying a few more of J’s recipes when we get to Denver and have some more of the tools needed to create them, such as a blender.