Asian-Inspired Flank Steak Marinade

flanksteak

I bought some flank steak and was going to just salt, pepper and throw garlic on it but then I was inspired seeing my friend make dinner one evening. She was grating ginger into some soy sauce for a marinade. It smelled really good! Too bad she didn’t invite me for dinner. 🙂 I built on that idea, did a little research, then created an Asian-Inspired Marinade for my flank steak*. My kids ate this up! I was really shocked because my kids are not beef eaters.

(*This marinade works on other beef cuts, ribs, chicken, pork, fish, tofu etc..)

RECIPE

  • 1/2 cup of low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 T of honey (or agave nectar)
  • a juice of 1 lime
  • 1 T of olive oil
  • 1 T of sesame oil
  • 1 T of chopped garlic
  • 1 T of chopped green onions
  • 1 tsp of grated ginger (fresh)
  • 1/2 tsp of black pepper
  • 1-1/2 pounds of beef flank steak
  1. Combine all the ingredients into a bowl.
  2. Coat the steak with the marinade, cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours (the longer the better!)
  3. Grill for 7-8 minutes per side (for medium rare).

Serve with steamed broccoli with a touch of sesame oil or sautéed mushrooms for a delicious low-carb meal. So yummy! If you have any leftovers, this would be perfect as a steak salad for lunch the next day. Toss it with my Sesame Vinaigrette dressing.

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Zucchini Brownies

zucchinibrownies

What?! Zucchini Brownies? It doesn’t sound appetizing but I can tell you that it is very good. It’s moist, rich, super dark, not too sweet, and yes, guilt-free (gluten-free, no refined sugar, no butter or oil, nut-free, and wheat-free). My 9-year old daughter loves them. My 4-year old son won’t try anything with the word “zucchini” it in no matter how chocolatey it is. If you’re lucky, it’s a great way to get veggies in your child or husband’s diet. 🙂 Perfect for dessert or a snack.

The recipe is from cookingalamel.com but I made my own changes because I want it EXTRA DARK!

RECIPE

  • 1 cup almond meal
  • 1/2 cup Peet’s unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/4 cup plain Fage Greek yogurt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 T vanilla extract
  • 1/2 t liquid stevia (or 1/2 cup more coconut sugar, added to the dry ingredients)
  • 2-3 zucchini squash, shredded
  • One (1) 3.5 oz. of 85% or higher dark chocolate bar, roughly chopped
  • Optional: 3/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
  1. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Grease or line an 8″x 8″ pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together the almond meal, cocoa, salt, baking soda, and coconut sugar.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, beat the yogurt, eggs, vanilla, and liquid stevia together, until smooth.
  4. Slowly add the dry ingredients until fully incorporated.
  5. Fold in the shredded zucchini, chocolate pieces, and nuts.
  6. Pour into a greased 8×8 baking dish.
  7. Bake for 30-35 minutes until toothpick comes out clean. Let cool before cutting.

Overnight Oats

overnightoatsWhen I get lazy or don’t have time to make old-fashioned oatmeal, I can make these… I love these Overnight Oats! I found the idea from a friend’s Instagram post. She’s a fitness and nutrition coach (TineySpark) and now I can have oatmeal without all the work. You can use either a mason jar or an almost-empty-jar* of peanut butter.

(* almost empty means you have about 1 tablespoon of peanut butter around the jar)

RECIPE

In a mason jar…

  • 1 Tbsp of PB (or any nut butter)
  • 1/2 cup of uncooked old-fashion oatmeal (not quick oats or steel-cut)
  • 1/2 cup of almond milk (soy, coconut or rice milk works too)
  • 1 Tbsp of agave nectar (or other sweetener of choice)
  • 1 tsp of shredded coconut
  • 1 tsp of unsweetened cocoa powder
  • a splash of vanilla extract
  • a couple shakes of cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp of chia seeds
  • 1/2 tsp of flax seeds
  1. Put the lid tightly back on the jar.
  2. Shake vigorously!
  3. Place the jar in the refrigerator overnight and you’ll have a guilt-free, dairy-free breakfast ready in the morning!

Other options:

  • Use 1-2 Tbsp of PB2 instead of peanut butter.
  • Add sliced bananas before refrigerating overnight.
  • Add 1/4 cup of Greek yogurt or do half yogurt and half milk.

Chewy Chocolate Pecan Cookies

ChewyChocPecanSandiesFresh out of the oven, these Chewy Chocolate Pecan Cookies could almost pass for brownie edges. Almost. Store them in the refrigerator for about a week. You can heat them up a bit in a toaster oven later. I love dunking these in a glass of cold coconut milk!

RECIPE

  • 2 cups of blanched almond flour (lighter) or almond meal (darker)
  • 2 T cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1/2 cup of pecans or walnuts (raw or roasted)
  • 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter, ghee, or coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup of coconut nectar or agave nectar
  • 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • course salt for sprinkling on each cookie (optional)
  • 1 tsp of ground cinnamon (optional)
  1. Preheat your oven to 325°F.
  2. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl.
  3. Add in the wet ingredients.
  4. Prepare baking sheets with parchment paper or a non-stick mat.
  5. Place small balls of cookie dough about an inch apart on the cookie sheet. Press them down with a fork like you would for peanut butter cookies.
  6. Sprinkle a bit of salt over each cookie.
  7. Bake for 12-15 minutes.

Dark Chocolate Chip Chocolate Cupcakes

dkchoc_choc_chip_cupcakeNeed a super-duper-chocolate fix? Try these Dark Chocolate Chip Chocolate Cupcakes on for size! They’re rich and sweet just by themselves, but my kids wanted ice cream with it so I scooped out the center and placed a little scoop of Vanilla Ice Cream. Caps-Lock-O-M-G! Now that’s a guilt-free, gluten-free dessert enough to push you over the edge!

RECIPE

  • 1/2 cup almond flour or almond meal
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp of salt
  • 1/4 tsp of baking soda
  • 2 eggs (room temperature)
  • 1 cup of coconut palm nectar or agave nectar
  • 1 tbsp of vanilla
  • 1 bar of 70+% dark chocolate, rough chopped
  1. Preheat oven at 350˚F. Line muffin pan with 12 paper cups.
  2. Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. In another bowl, whisk the wet ingredients.
  4. Combine the wet and dry ingredients.
  5. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  6. Put 1/4 cup of batter into each muffin cup.
  7. Bake for 18-22 minutes and let cool.
  8. Serve warm. (If you need to reheat, microwave for about 7-10 seconds per cupcake.)

Strawberry Vanilla Lemonade

straw_van_lemonadeMy daughter and I had a free Saturday one day while my husband and son went on a hike. I asked her what she wanted to do and she requested to have a tea party at home. Just the two of us. How sweet. She said she didn’t want to drink tea. She wanted “fancy lemonade.” My parents’ lemon tree happened to have an abundance of lemons that week so I happened to have a zillion lemons on hand. I also happened to have some strawberries in my freezer that I save for making smoothies. Together, we made a sugar-free Strawberry Vanilla Lemonade. Served in champagne flutes, my daughter definitely enjoyed her fancy lemonade on our Mommy & Daughter Tea Party.

RECIPE

  • 4-5 lemons
  • 1-2 tsp of vanilla
  • 1/3 to 1/2 tsp of powdered Stevia extract (or other sweetener)
  • 6-8 fresh or frozen strawberries, washed, cleaned and cut in half
  • water and ice
  1. Juice the lemons and pour in a pitcher.
  2. Add vanilla.
  3. Fill with ice and water.
  4. Add Stevia (or other sweetener). Add more to your preferred sweetness.
  5. Add the strawberries and let them soak for an hour before serving so that the strawberry flavor enhances the lemonade.

“Corn” Dog Bites

corndogsMy favorite gluten-free food blogger, Michelle at GlutenFreeFix.com, strikes again! She made these low-carb, gluten-free “Corn” Dog Bites that both my kids enjoyed! So much so that I made it TWICE in a week! Although it doesn’t have corn in the recipe, the bread comes pretty close to tasting like cornbread.

I also made a cheese only option for my daughter who loves cheese. These are quite simple and fun to make. Perfect for a weekend lunch with the kids, an after-school snack or as an appetizer. I’m thinking of making these for Easter for the kids to eat while egg hunting. 🙂

RECIPE

  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp agave nectar or coconut nectar
  • 1/4 cup almond flour, firmly packed
  • 2 Tbsp coconut flour, firmly packed
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 3-4 hot dogs or string cheese (cut in 1/2 inch slices)
  1. Preheat oven to 325˚F.
  2. Whisk together melted butter, eggs and sweetener.
  3. Stir in dry ingredients. Then add in the shredded cheese.
  4. Scoop into greased mini muffin pans, about 1 tablespoon of batter in each.
  5. Place 1 hot dog or cheese slice in each muffin batter.
  6. Bake for 14-17 minutes, until golden brown.
  7. Serve warm.