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.

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.)

“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.

Stormy Chocolate

stormy_hotchocA very good friend of mine shared this dairy-free, gluten-free Stormy Chocolate drink by Stormy Large. It sounded so good (and hilariously written) that when I read it on her Facebook page I had to try and see if it was true AND if I wanted to punch somebody. 🙂

RECIPE

  • 2 Tbsp Pure cacao powder
  • 1 tsp of your sweetener of choice (Stevia, Xylitol, Agave Nectar, etc.)
  • Cinnamon
  • Cayenne
  • Coconut Milk
  1. Place two heaping tablespoons of cacao powder in a mug.
  2. Sprinkle generously with cayenne and cinnamon.
  3. Add 1/4 cup boiling water to make a hot chocolatey paste.
  4. Add sweetener and then slowly add hot coconut milk “until you want to punch somebody. It’s so freaking delicious.”

Yes, it was so deliciously creamy and rich that I forgot it was guilt-free. So perfect on a rainy morning with breakfast or a cold day out camping.

 

Chocolate Avocado Mousse

choc_avocado_mousseI was watching Top Chef one night, and it was a healthy food challenge. One of the contestants made a dairy-free chocolate dessert using avocado. That perked my attention, not only because I love avocado, but because it’s dairy-free. So I played around to come up with my version of Chocolate Avocado Mousse. It is just as rich and creamy as the real thing. You don’t actually taste the avocado so if you don’t like avocado but you want a healthier version of a chocolate mousse, then you should give this recipe a try.

I also started experimenting with Xylitol. I was a little worried about using this sweetener because I thought it was a man-made substitute. It’s not. “Xylitol is a naturally occurring alcohol found in most plant material, including many fruits and vegetables. It is extracted from birch wood to make medicine.” It tastes just like sugar and with no after-taste. You can use it in the same proportions as sugar (1:1) and it is actually good for your teeth. The  catch is it is quite expensive. So I use it sporadically. If you consume too much in a day, your tummy won’t like it. (I haven’t had this problem.)

You can use Xylitol with this recipe or another sweetener of your choice. It’s still delicious.

RECIPE

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut cream, chilled
  • 3-4 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1-2 tsp of Xylitol or agave nectar, coconut palm nectar (or other sweetener of your choice)
  • Optional: Add a tsp. of peanut butter for a richer, more decadent mousse.
  1. Cut the avocado in half and scoop the flesh into a bowl (or in a blender or food processor).
  2. Add coconut cream, cocoa powder and sweetener.
  3. Mash with a fork (or blend/process) until smooth.
  4. Serve chilled.