Category Archives: recipes

Candida-Friendly Granola Bars

Woahhhh….the first recipe I’ve posted in over six months. Feels weird. But also feels good to get back to blogging a little. I caught you up to speed in how it’s going with my candida cleanse. Again, I feel like I basically want to quit everyday and eat a box of apple cider donuts. And pumpkin beer. I’ve really craved apple fritters or cider donuts more than anything. Probably because it’s fall and I haven’t been able to have any of it.

ANYWAYS, you have to survive somehow with no sugar, coffee or alcohol. So I made these granola bars! These are very similar to the regular granola bars I blogged about here and make my husband nearly every week in his lunch. A version is also in my cookbook. I just left out the honey or sugar. Gluten free oats are allowed on the candida cleanse I am doing, in moderation. I like to use homemade cashew butter and it makes them kind of taste like cookie dough bars! The result is a gluten free, sugar free, dairy-free candida friendly snack. Best of all there are only four ingredients! Super simple and worth the small amount of effort.

You could add chocolate chips, nuts, or dried fruit if you’re not on the cleanse as well.

Candida Friendly Granola Bars

granola bars candida

You’ll need:

1 cup nut butter (sugar free!) *I like homemade cashew

1 and 1/2 cups gluten free oats

1 egg

1/2 tsp cinnamon

 

1.Pre-heat oven to 350. Melt the nut butter in a large, glass, microwave safe bowl for 1 minute.

2. Mix your oats in and stir until well incorporated.

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3. Add the egg and cinnamon and stir again until well combined.

4. Pour the mixture into an 8X8 baking dish that is greased, sprayed with non-stick spray, or lined with a silicone sheet. I like my silicone baking sheets so much! Nothing sticks.

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5. Press the mixture down until it is even in the pan.

6. Bake for 20 minutes or until the edges are golden brown. After cooled, cut into bars!

Makes 8 bars.

If you’re not used to sugar-less treats just be aware that these have NO sweetener, so they might take some getting used to. If you’re on the candida diet or have been away from sugar like me they should taste just fine.

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What I ate Wednesday: Pulled Pork

I ate some pretty delicious food that I couldn’t help but share today, so I’m linking up with Jenn for What I ate Wednesday!

Another crazy thing was me actually remembering to take a picture of (mostly) everything I ate (Tuesday) Be sure to check out the link up to check out her and many many other blogger’s eats for the day.

I’ve been trying out A LOT of different things for breakfast since school started in the fall. First I started with just smoothies since I was working out in the morning….then when I stopped working out I started doing full on meals again (went well with my Whole 30). This week I am doing hemp smoothies with two hard boiled eggs for some extra protein. We were away last weekend and I wanted something quick and easy instead of prepping my usual egg casserole. I am enjoying this fast and easy breakfast as opposed to trying to stomach a whole huge meal.

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I use three tablespoons of Nutiva Organic Hemp Protein, a tablespoon of cocoa, a banana, coconut milk and a tablespoon of flaxseed. Not the sweetest, milk-shakeyest smoothie out there but full of real food!

(Two un-pictured hardboiled eggs!)

Lunch- leftovers from the night before

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{Cilantro Shrimp Stir-Fry from the 21-Day Sugar Detox Cookbook}

Yes that is some white rice! It was only about 1/4 cup. This was the first time I included white rice with my dinner since going Paleo! It’s usually a food-with-no-brakes for me. It was mostly laziness. Cauliflower rice is SO messy!

Also with the leftovers for lunch I enjoyed a yummy salad of greens topped with tomatoes, cucumbers, LOVE beets, and roasted broccoli and sweet potatoes I cooked up on Sunday. Sprinkled with pumpkin seeds.

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When I got home I had a chiropractor appointment, so I enjoyed a quick spoonful of Paleo cookie dough before running out the door. I rushed to the appointment only to sit there waiting for a half an hour. #aintnobodygottimefodat

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Dinner was really what took the cake…..all day I had a huge pork roast in the crock pot (I followed the kalua pork recipe from Nom Nom Paleo Cookbook) which resulted in this pulled pork deliciousness:

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{cue Hallelujah music} I don’t know if people realize how easy pulled pork is. I had this sitting in the crockpot all day and came home and it was done! Love easy dinners like that.

I made BBQ sauce from Well Fed 2and topped it with jalepenos. Alongside some plantain fries, of course.

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Such crappy photography, but such delicious food.

And after I finish this post I will end up eating some banana bread from The Paleo Kitchen. SO that’s everything I ate Tuesday. So delicious! I have been feeling a bit more upbeat lately and I’m glad. Maybe it has to do with the fact I WILL BE IN FLORIDA IN LESS THAN TWO WEEKS! Yes we just got hit with a snowstorm but I feel like I can see a light at the end of the tunnel. Anyway, enjoy your hump day!

*Some of these links were affiliate links
What was the best thing you ate yesterday!?

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Paleo Cookie Dough + Weekend Eats

Everyone has time for a blog post when it’s a snow day! I really did just need a good snow day. One more day to ignore responsibilities of work, languish around doing nothing and not feel bad about it. That’s what snow days are for!

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I could definitely use one considering we did a lot of traveling and were out and about in Syracuse this weekend. It was an amazing weekend filled with friends and eating all the things. Also, my first sip of alcohol since New Years. Contrary to what I said or promised on January first, I’m not never drinking alcohol again. March is coming.

Anyway I got a chance to try out a great new restaurant and an old favorite this weekend- Notch 8 in Jamesville.

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I was going back and forth between this (Salmon with arugula salad and sweet potato puree) and a burger. This was absolutely delicious albiet I was still hungry afterwards! My sister got a burger that I was subsequently drooling over. But it left room for gelato for dessert! No picture, sorry.

The next day we visited the obvious Syracuse choice, Dinosaur BBQ. OMG is pretty much all I need to say.

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Ribs, BBQ brisket, coleslaw, turkey neck collard greens and cornbread. The cornbread was everything. Obviously, my Whole30 is dunzo. I had a beer along with my meal that was called “Smoked Dino Porter”. The waitress said they use the wood that they use to smoke the meat to make the beer. Yum. After that we hit up Middle Ages Brewery for some more deliciousness. No picture again, sorry I fail.

After that weekend I was glad to get a call this morning letting me know I had another day off! Snow days call for breakfasts like this:

snow day breakfast

Eggs with hot sauce, plantain fries with sun butter. Perfect!

Anyways I was bored and had some random leftover ingredients left to make a delicious “paleo” treat. I was supposed to make snack balls but when I pulled it out of the food processor it really looked like cookie dough so I went with it. If you’re craving an egg-less paleo friendly cookie dough you can enjoy right off the spoon- this is it! Super easy to make and just has 4 ingredients! It’s gluten free, refined sugar free and BS free!

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paleo cookie dough

 

Paleo Cookie Dough
Serves 1
Eat it with a spoon! Just 4 ingredients!
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Prep Time
5 min
Prep Time
5 min
Ingredients
  1. 1/2 cup raw cashews
  2. 1/4 cup coconut butter
  3. 5-6 dates
  4. Handful of chocolate chips * for full dairy and soy free use Enjoy Life
  5. *If you have super-human self control or want more servings this can be easily doubled or tripled!
Instructions
  1. Place the cashews and the dates in a food processor and pulse until the mixture starts coming together.
  2. Add the coconut butter and keep processing until the mixture is uniform.
  3. Fold in chocolate chips. Enjoy!
Pencils and Pancakes http://pencilsandpancakes.com/
What do you like to do on Snow days?

Have you ever been to Dinosaur BBQ?

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Paleo Crockpot Venison Stew

A lot of people have a “love it” or “won’t touch it” attitude when it comes to venison. However I don’t really have a choice due to the fact it comprises about 50% of what I have in my freezer right now!

I definitely don’t mind! Venison isn’t my favorite meat, but it was more or less free and that’s what makes it so good! My husband got a deer in the fall and we processed it here and saved it all with our vacuum saver. Voila- non-supermarket unadulterated

meat in the freezer and I basically didn’t have to do a thing!

Venison is also higher in protein, lower in calories and higher in some vitamins than beef! I prefer the taste of beef, when I cook venison with a variety of different flavors that compliment it, I can hardly tell the difference!

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The main benefit for me is obtaining meat that hasn’t been raised by our industrial meat system. Sometimes I don’t get why people don’t want to eat venison because they think of a “cute deer” or something. I mean that deer probably had a better life and death than the cow from the burger you ate from your supermarket meat so there’s little to that argument. And if you’ve been reading my blog for a bit you know I have experience with eating animals that I’ve raised!

Anyway, I bet you were hoping for the recipe sometime soon. This venison stew is super fast to prepare and easy! I made it in about 10 minutes on Sunday before I went to the gym in the morning and it was done by dinner time. Feel free to add potatoes or other root vegetables of your liking. We ate the stew with side salads and still had enough leftovers for the next night! Enjoy!

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Paleo Crockpot Venison Stew
Serves 5
A hearty, warm dish perfect for a cold night!
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Prep Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 1-2 lbs venison stew meat (cubed chunks)
  2. 9-10 carrots, peeled and diced
  3. 2 white onions, sliced
  4. 1 clove garlic, minced
  5. 4 cups beef or chicken broth
  6. 3/4 can of tomato paste
  7. 1/2 cup red wine
  8. 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  9. 1 tsp salt
  10. 1 tsp pepper
  11. 2 tsp dried oregano
  12. 2 tsp fresh rosemary
  13. 2 bay leaves
Instructions
  1. Place everything in the crock pot and cook on low for 8-10 hours, or until the meat is tender.
  2. Salt, pepper and season to taste.
Pencils and Pancakes http://pencilsandpancakes.com/

 This is a great recipe for a weeknight- virtually no dishes and leftovers for the second night (depending on how big your family is). If venison isn’t your thing you can easily sub beef!

Are you a fan of venison?

What are your favorite easy weeknight meals?

 

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Whole 30 Week 2 Meal Plan

Like many other whole food and Paleo bloggers I decided to do the Whole 30 in January. I got a late start because I was too >ahem< sick to start on New Years Day. Then I wasn’t prepared to start on the Friday after New Years because I didn’t have the right food in the house. SO I started last Saturday.

Today is Day 8! Here’s what I have planned for week 2 of my Whole 30. 

Breakfasts-

Pork Soup
*I made soup with butternut squash, Swiss chard, pork stock and bits of leftover pork. I usually make soup for lunch but it’s been annoying carrying it into school so I decided to just eat it here for breakfast.

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Lunches-
Venison Stew (Mon-Wed)
Tuna Sushi (Thu-Fri)

I got these awesome Nori rolls at a natural food co-op I was at Saturday. Can’t wait to put them to the test!

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Dinners-
Monday- Leftover Spaghetti Bolognese (over zucchini noodles)
A recipe from Practical Paleo

Tuesday- White pork chili from Meals Made Simple (Against All Grain)
Got this book for Christmas and haven’t made much from it, I was really looking forward to trying this recipe.

Wednesday- Leftovers!

Thursday- Country ribs with mashed parnsips/potatoes and green beans

Fri- Wing it?

Saturday- Pork Arrabiata over zucchini noodles (Also from Meals Made Simple).

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A week into Whole 30 and I am feeling better, trying to get in some grass fed beef liver. It tastes gross but I am really trying to force myself to like it. I hide it in some meatballs and it’s pretty good. I picked up a large haul from my farmer the other day. #nutrientseeker

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I’ve been feeling very blah and just unmotivated and I’m pretty sure the winter is getting to me. At the natural grocery store I visited this weekend I picked up some Whole 30 compliant vitamins to help with this at the advice of my naturopath. I never even thought of the vitamin D issue. I’m probably getting next to zero vitamin D right now…. Ugh, winter.

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Have a great week!
Are you doing Whole 30? How are you feeling?

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Bacon and Pecan Stuffed Acorn Squash {21DSD} {WIAW}

Happy Wednesday: one week and one day left til Thanksgiving! I’m so excited to eat food. Everyone is already flipping out about Christmas and I’m not against that or anything, I just feel bad for Thanksgiving. I think “the holidays” just get wrapped up into one “event” and Thanksgiving just gets lost…..but I think it’s awesome. Because you get to cook and eat food and be with family without spending ALL the money and worrying if someone is going to like your gift.

This week for What I ate Wednesday, I have a recipe that would make a GREAT Thanksgiving side dish…or any fall dinner side dish. I love all kinds of squash and while butternut it up at the top of my favorites, acorn squash is up there too.

I have been sticking with the The 21-Day Sugar Detox for the last couple of weeks and it feels great! I can’t believe how much it drastically reduces my will to snack and eat all day. It’s crazy. Yes it’s hard abstaining from sweet and sugary things but it makes SUCH a difference. I should probably eat like this all the time…..it’s like one sweet thing and I fall down the rabbit hole. There’s not a lot of “moderation” when it comes to sugar because it makes you crave more! It’s also hard giving up plantains. SunButter and coconut butter
are essential tools to get through a sugar detox! I make my own to make it cheaper. BUT one more week! Here’s some meals:

21 Day sugar detox burgers

Burger Night! Finally picked up some beef from our farmer and I made Nom Nom Paleo’s bacon burgers with homemade relish and spicy carrot fries. And yes that is sun butter to go with my carrot fries. Because, why not?

dry rub pork butt

I made a pork shoulder in the pressure cooker the other night and created this dry rub for it. I forgot to take a picture when it was on my plate but this was a thing of beauty. The pressure cooker is magic. A 6 lb pork shoulder done and falling apart in 1 hour.

And of course these:

bacon and pecan stufffed acorn squash

You can basically add bacon to almost everything, I’m discovering. Especially squash. I made these for a quick lunch the other day but I think they’d make a great Thanksgiving side dish. You could easily add maple syrup if you’re not on the 21 Day Sugar Detox. I didn’t add syrup and they were just as delicious! Enjoy!

bacon pecan acorn squash

Bacon and Pecan Stuffed Acorn Squash
Serves 2
A 21 Day Sugar Detox compliant Thanksgiving side dish.
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 acorn squash, split and seeded*
  2. 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  3. 2 strips of bacon
  4. 1/4 cup of pecans
  5. 1 tablespoon of maple syrup (**if not on 21 DSD**)
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 400.
  2. Melt coconut oil in the microwave. Spread the oil on the inside of the acorn squash.
  3. Place acorn squash face down on a baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 30 min or until you can press your finger into the back of the squash (be careful not to burn yourself, as I regularly do)
  5. While squash is baking, fry the bacon in a cast iron or stainless steel skillet until crispy and brown.
  6. Set the bacon aside, leaving the grease in the pan.
  7. Place pecans in the bacon grease and cook until browned, about 3-5 minutes. Set aside with bacon.
  8. Give the bacon and pecans a rough chop. **If using maple syrup, add the bacon and pecans to a bowl with the syrup and mix.
  9. When the squash is done, let it cool, then flip over and divide the bacon and pecan mixture into the "bowls".
  10. Mix to eat!
Notes
  1. *You could easily double (or triple!) this recipe to feed more people!
Pencils and Pancakes http://pencilsandpancakes.com/

*FYI: This post contains affiliate links. As always thanks for supporting Pencils and Pancakes.

What are you favorite Thanksgiving side dishes?

Have you ever tried the 21DSD?

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How to roast my favorite vegetables

Whenever someone says that they don’t like vegetables, my first thought is that they are probably cooking them in an unappetizing manner. Growing up the only vegetables I can remember eating were vegetables from a can (gross) or vegetables that were steamed (boring). Sorry but steamed veggies just don’t do it for me. The only thing I really enjoy eating steamed is fresh green beans from the garden. I don’t mind those raw, however, either.

how to roast vegetables

It wasn’t until I started cooking and eating real food that I discovered roasting vegetables. Add some fat and spice to virtually any veggie, roast in the oven and it’s magic! Vegetables are now delicious! Who woulda thought?!?!

Some of my favorites:

Roast Carrot Fries
Carrot Fries2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Curry Roasted Parsnip Fries

Curry Roasted Parsnip Fries 2

Plantain Fries (duh)

plantain fries

Sweet Potatoes

Roasted Squash

I could go on and on- the possibilities are endless! Instead, I’ve created a handy guide for you to roasting vegetables with tons of combos. It includes two spice combos for each vegetable, recommended roasting fats and temperature and time. I’ve provided this guide for you FREE! All you have to do is enter your email and you’ll be able to download the PDF. I promise to not spam you! I hardly even remember to do newsletters with my mailing list. Once a week is the VERY MOST I will send out emails and often times it’s less frequent than that! Thanks for reading 🙂


Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

 

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WIAW- Halloween Week

Happy Halloween week! Hope you’re enjoying your pre halloween week! We went to a Halloween party this weekend. It unfortunately I didn’t take any pictures of us. Our costumes were pretty lame, considering we bought them for a group costume for a party we’re going to THIS weekend. I promise I’ll get some pictures.

I did get a pic if the dish I made for the party (typical) so I’m linking up again for What I ate Wednesday!

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Ghostly pear guacamole with plantain chips from Primal Palate’s Gather cookbook. So good! There was lots of non-paleo food there but I mostly stuck to the veggies and guac. And….. Beer. Always regret it the next day. We’ll see how I do this weekend. Juli of PaleOMG pretty much summed up my exact thoughts on alcohol in her post yesterday. Always seems like a good idea at the time, and I’m fine with one or two drinks. But anything past that is always not a good time the next day.

Last week we saw the return of chicken, and paleo chicken fajitas with plantain chips. Who needs tortillas when you have plantains???

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Also, I got the chance to make my paleo cereal last week one morning for breakfast. Check out the recipe, it’s delish!

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Speaking of recipes, in case you missed it I finally released my new eCookbook, The Pencils and Pancakes Real Food Cookbook! I worked long and hard in this so your support in any way is extremely appreciated. All the recipes are gluten free, refined sugar free and use real, whole food! Click here to buy or on the cookbook section at the top of my page!

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Cookie dough truffles in the book!!

What are you being for Halloween??


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Butternut Squash Soup with Bacon

Yup, you know you want this recipe because I added the “with bacon” tagline….

I made this soup for two weeks in a row now and deemed it “the best soup I’ve ever made.” I get on a kick with what I make for my lunch and pretty much make it until I get so sick of it I can’t stand it anymore. That pretty much already happened for chicken soup with kale at the beginning of the year. So I’ve switched it up a bit. Now that we got our bacon from our pigs I’ve been pretty much throwing it in everything.

This week I’m linking up with Jenn from Peas and Crayons to share what I ate..which is this soup. I don’t have too many pictures from what I ate for the week because this weekend we went camping. Here are a few beautiful pictures of the scenery:

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ASP #2

ASP #3

I love fall!

Actually I did take a pic of some of our food camping:

camp eggs

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We stayed in a cabin with a food stove and gas oven. Can’t beat eggs fried in bacon fat. Those were our last eggs from our chickens 🙁

I also made homemade pulled BBQ pork last week. OMG.

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Ate it alongside an acorn squash with pecans and butter and roasted broccoli. This was ridiculous.

And speaking of squash: now for the recipe!

 

Butternut Squash Soup with Bacon
Serves 4
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Total Time
30 min
Total Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 large butternut squash, peeled and cubed
  2. 1 large white onion, chopped
  3. 4-6 cups of stock (pork or chicken stock works best)
  4. 2 cloves garlic
  5. 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  6. Salt and pepper to taste
  7. 1/2 tsp onion powder
  8. 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  9. 1/2 lb bacon, cut up into 1 " strips
Instructions
  1. Fill a large stockpot with chicken/pork stock. Add your cubed butternut squash, onion and garlic.
  2. Bring to a boil and cook until soft, about 20-25 minutes.**
  3. Take off the stove and let cool. Meanwhile, throw your bacon in a saute pan and cook until done. Set aside on a paper towel.
  4. When soup is cool, working in batches, place the mixture into a food processor. Be careful not to fill the food processor too full so it doesn't overflow.
  5. Place the soup back in the pot and add spices. Be sure to season with salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for 10-15 minutes or until warmed again.
  6. Add bacon and some of the remaining fat from the pan (I mean why not).
  7. Serve warm.
Notes
  1. **Alternatively, you can do this in a pressure cooker for half the time. Once it starts boiling and reaching high pressure, lower the heat and cook for about 10 minutes.
Pencils and Pancakes http://pencilsandpancakes.com/
Do you like camping? What foods do you typically bring?

What’s your favorite thing to pair bacon with?

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