Chocolate Chip + Pear Blondies {Gluten-free}

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I think I have discovered the perfect dessert. Chocolate, pear, brown sugar – three of my favorite flavors and all in one cute little package. Added bonus, all three flavors pair exceptionally well with vanilla gelato (but wait, what doesn’t pair well with vanilla gelato?)

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These little Blondie beauties are inspired by a recipe I saw over on Hummusapien. I modified based on what I had available, so they are not quite as healthy as hers are. However, since yesterday was the first day in FOUR AND A HALF MONTHS that we had a fully functioning oven, I felt that a celebration was in order.

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The recipe doesn’t make a ton of batter, which is good for those who live in a two person household and who don’t want to commit to blondies breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

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Since I’m not eating blondies all day, every day, I chose not to skimp on its vanilla cohost. If I’m going for a frozen treat, I’m going big. Talenti Tahitian Vanilla Bean Gelato all the way. Not only does it taste better, but the ingredient list is smaller and not chock full of chemical crap.

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Chocolate Chip + Pear Blondies {adapted from Hummusapien}
Makes 8

INGREDIENTS
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup oil
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup gluten-free all purpose flour {I used Bob’s Red Mill}
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 medium ripe pear, chopped into small pieces
  • ⅓ cup chocolate chips
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease or line 8 cups in a muffin tin.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together brown sugar, oil, vanilla, and egg until combined.
  3. In another medium bowl, mix together flour, salt, and baking powder. Combine wet and dry ingredients.
  4. Fold in chopped pears and chocolate chips.
  5. Spoon mixture into mini muffin tins, making sure to distribute batter and pears evenly (the batter will be fairly sticky).
  6. Bake for approximately 25 minutes. Allow for blondies to cool before removing from wrappers.
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Oatmeal Banana Cookies

My life requires sweet things, usually in the form of chocolate. Unfortunately (or not at all), my body hates overly processed, chemical laden garbage, which is what many sweets are made of. That being said, I have learned to compromise when I need my sweet fix… and you know what? It really doesn’t feel like a compromise at all.

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Not only are these cookies filled with real ingredients, there are very few ingredients required. You start with ripened bananas and oatmeal (and can totally stop there if that’s your thing).ImageThen, if you’re feeling fancy, add in another flavor or two – I went with 60% cacao bittersweet chocolate chips and roasted pecans.

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The result? A delightfully chewy, naturally sweet, healthy cookie… that I may just use as a pre-gym snack.
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Oatmeal Banana Cookies (makes 8):

3 ripe bananas
1.5 cups oatmeal (I use Silver Palate ‘Thick & Rough’)
32 Ghiradelli 60% Cacao Chocolate Chips, chopped
1/4 cups dry roasted and salted pecans, chopped
Non-stick cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350. Mash bananas and add in oatmeal, chocolate, and pecans. On a cookie sheet sprayed with non-stick cooking spray, portion mix into 8 equal cookies. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until cookies are golden brown.

Nutritional Info (per cookie):
169.2 calories, 5.6g fat, 28.4g carbs, 9.3g sugar, 4.5g fiber, 4.6% daily iron

 

 

 

Gluten + Dairy-Free Rustic Apple Pie

I had different plans in mind for this pie. Plans that possibly included a lattice crust, or maybe even a crust assembled out of cut out leaves. After the well-behaved crust that accompanied my sweet potato pie, I felt that this plan was most certainly within reach.

Once the dough was made, chilled, and in the process of being rolled out, I soon realized that my double-crusted, gluten-free dreams were not coming true this go ’round. There was a whole lot more tearing and thus, much more smashing than I had anticipated.

I threw together some oatmeal, molasses, and brown sugar (amongst other things) and assembled a sort of crumble. A deliciously gooey mess it was, and more smashing ensued. I smashed and smashed until there was no more apple to be seen.

I love pies of all types, but this pie is best served warm. Toasty oatmeal, melty molasses, spices, and orange zest come together beautifully–it’s autumn on a plate. Top it with dairy-free ice cream and in that moment, nothing else will matter. Nothing.

Gluten + Dairy-Free Rustic Apple Pie (Adapted from Southern Living 2009 Annual Recipes Cookbook):

3lbs peeled and sliced Granny Smith apples
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp lemon juice
zest of 1/2 orange
3/4 cup all-purpose gluten-free flour, divided
1/2tsp salt, divided
3/4 cup vegan margarine
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/8 tsp corriander
1/8 tsp cloves
1/8 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3/4 tsp cinnamon, divided
1/2 cup oatmeal, plus an extra bit for sprinkling
1-2 tbsp molasses
1 9″ gluten-free pie crust, recipe here

Preheat oven to 375. Stir together apple, sugar, lemon juice, orange zest, 1/4 cup gf flour, and 1/4 tsp salt. Mix until well blended.

Cut margarine into remaining 1/2 cup flour until mixture becomes crumbly. Stir in brown sugar, 1 tbsp molasses, oats, spices, and remaining 1/4 tsp salt. Mixture should be well blended and sticky, but not wet. If too much molasses has been added, add in more oats a tablespoon at a time.

Extrude gf pie dough between two pieces of plastic wrap or wax paper. Transfer to pie dish.

Spoon apple mixture into pie crust. Top apple mixture with crumble mixture, spreading evenly to cover fully. Cover with foil and bake for approximately 40 minutes. Remove foil, dust with additional oats (and some spices if you like) and bake uncovered approximately 15-20 more minutes. Serve warm.

Peanut Butter Brownies // Gluten + Dairy Free

A plate of brownies, glutinous, dairy-laced, or free of both, is still a plate of brownies. I’d like to convince myself of otherwise considering the quickness with which these disappeared (on top of three separate Thanksgiving dinners + leftovers), but c’est la vie, it’s staycation week.

Staycation week has been more or less like this plate of brownies: easy, sweet, and too quickly passing. While both the brownies and my luxurious days off are coming to an end, they will both live long in memory. (Though I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that after the past several days, I could certainly use a little less couch time and a lot less sugar.)

I had a much more Martha Stewart-esque presentation for these babies, but the peanut butter didn’t get the memo and baked right in, leaving no detectable knife-swirled effort. Regardless of presentation, they turned out wonderfully. Chewy, chocolatey, and perfectly peanut buttery.
Peanut Butter Brownies// Gluten + Dairy Free (inspired by What Life Dished out via Tasty Kitchen):
4 oz semi-sweet baking chocolate (non-dairy)
4 oz 70% Cacao dark chocolate, chopped
1/3 cup, plus 2 tablespoons vegan margarine (I used Earth Balance), softened
3 tbsp peanut butter
2 tbsp powdered sugar
2 tbsp unsweetened almond milk
2/3 cup all-purpose gluten-free flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp cornstarch
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
Non-stick cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350. Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and cornstarch. Whisk to combine.

On medium-low heat, melt together 2 tbsp butter and semi-sweet baking chocolate, stirring frequently to avoid burning. Set aside.

In a separate pan, on medium-low heat, melt peanut butter, powdered sugar, and almond milk. Stirring frequently to avoid burning. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment on medium speed, cream sugars and butter until fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and beat for an additional minute. Add melted chocolate and mix to combine. On low speed, add flour mixture in three increments. Add chopped chocolate and mix to combine.

Pour ingredients into a non-stick sprayed 9X12 baking dish and top with dollops of melted peanut butter. Drag a knife through the peanut butter to distribute.

Bake for approximately 20 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.