During pregnancy & the postpartum time it is so important to fuel ourselves with nourishing and energizing foods. During pregnancy our body pulls from our own storehouse to feed our growing baby and after baby is born between sleep exhaustion, caring for a new baby and simply recovering from the birth experience we need to give ourselves all the nutrients we can!
Baked granola is incredibly versatile, super easy to make, comes in a million different flavor combinations and is a fun and tasty way to pack in healthy grains, seeds, omegas, fruits and more!
The highlights of this recipe are the Dates, Pumpkin Seeds & Rolled Oats. Dates are a great source of B vitamins, can help reduce blood pressure and when eaten during the last 4 weeks of pregnancy can increase the likelihood of a shorter labor and decease the need for the use of pitocin. Pumpkin Seeds are rich in anti-inflammatory properties, can help produce a more restful sleep and support your heart and blood pressure. Lastly, rolled oats can reduce high cholesterol, are a great source of fiber and can help improve blood sugars.
My granola recipe changes a little each time depending what is in the pantry. For the sweeteners, I love to use a combination of either organic coconut sugar and pure maple syrup or a mix of raw honey and pure maple syrup. I would suggest playing around and see what you like best :)
Yield 2 1/2 Quarts
Preheat oven to 325
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat liner and set aside.
6 T butter or coconut oil ( or use a mix of both, I usually do half and half)
I T honey (more or less depending on taste)
1/4 cup pure maple syrup (more or less depending on taste)
1/4 cup coconut sugar (more or less depending on taste)
1 cup mejool dates, pitted and finely chopped
3 cups rolled oats (use organic if you can)
1/4 cup flax meal
2-3 T chia seeds
1/3 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup coconut flakes
2 T Amaranth
1 t ground cinnamon
Dash of sea salt
Melt butter in a large microwave safe bowl or on the stove-top in a large pot. Once butter has melted add in remaining ingredients and stir until combined. At this point, I do a taste test and see if I'm happy with the level of sweetness and add-ins. The more sweeteners you add the chewier your granola will be. Pour granola out onto prepared pan and press down firmly with a spatula. Bake for about 15 minutes or just until edges are lightly browned. Remove from oven and press down again with spatula. Allow to cool completely before removing from pan. Store in a covered airtight glass jar or other container.
I absolutely adore the Autumn season! The harvest, bright full moon, cool nights and the delicious warm smells of pumpkins, apples, cinnamon and steaming cups of hot apple cider. I may be slightly obsessed with this season but that's beside the point. You came by for a muffin recipe not to hear me go on and on about my favorite time of the year.
The beauty of this recipe is how EASY it is!!! It's designed to be mixed in a blender or food processor and naturally gluten free. For an easy dairy-free switch substitute the egg for a flax meal egg.
These muffins are light and tender, the cinnamon and nutmeg shine brightly and the finely shredded carrots add just the right amount of moistness The ground pumpkin seeds help to amp up the protein count while adding a nice earthy warmness to these delightful snacks.
Toss them in the freezer for an easy no-fuss snack or simple breakfast.
Recipe adapted from Simply Quinoa
Yield: 12 muffins
Preheat oven to 350 and place muffin liners in tin.
Why Pickles and Pregnancy???
Scientists aren't for sure why women crave certain foods during pregnancy but we do know pickles are one of the top craved foods during pregnancy. Try this simple refrigerator pickle recipe guaranteed to satisfy the strongest pickle craving:)
3 medium cucumbers, sliced
1 small onion, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon celery seed
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup honey
Combine cucumbers and onions with salt and celery seed and rest at room temperature for 1 hour. Mix honey and vinegar together and pour over cucumbers. Allow to set in the fridge for 24 hours. Pickles can keep in the fridge for up to three weeks (if they last that long lol) For more long-term storage. Try freezing in small containers. To serve thaw in fridge for a few hours before serving.
Dairy-free, egg-free, no refined sugar Banana Muffins. These also Freeze beautifully and my kids adore them. For my expecting friends these healthy snacks are a great source of whole grains, potassium, omegas and protein. For those who prefer gluten-free just use your favorite 1-1 gluten free flour blend. One of our favorites is the organic Namaste flour blend from Costco.
Yield 12 Muffins
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
1 1/2 cups flour of choice (I used an organic sprouted spelt flour)
1/3 cup coconut sugar
3/4 t baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
1 t cinnamon
1/2 t salt
2 T flax meal
5 T water
3 very ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 coconut oil or oil of choice
Mix water and flax meal and set aside for 5 min. In a bowl combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. In a separate bowl, mash bananas with oil and stir in flax/water mix. Add flour mixture into wet ingredients and stir just until combined. Scoop into lined muffin tin and bake 12 to 15 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from tin and rest on cooling rack.
Try experimenting with different add-ins:
Walnuts or Pecans
Top with "crumb" topping made from rolled oats, oil, cinnamon &coconut sugar