It’s almost Easter, and truthfully, I don’t crave or want regular old Easter candy at all. In fact, you couldn’t pay me to eat it—because I have so many things I can make myself that taste better (to me) and don’t have all the junk and sugar in them!
Besides, I’m kind of craving cheese more than candy lately. But that’s a different story. A few years ago, I had my cholesterol checked and it was borderline high. I was annoyed—I am healthy. But between then and now, my understanding of nutrition and things like cholesterol has evolved some. I’m not a fat-phobe anymore (in fact, it’s my favorite macronutrient—50-70% of my diet, actually). My feelings about what constitutes a “clean” diet has changed. I used to really lean toward a vegetarian (but not totally) diet that focused on more and more veggies/fruits and less and less animal products. It’s not that I think veggies/fruit are not “clean” anymore, but I’ve found that my body needs a lot more than that to thrive (and having to eat so many nuts and things to stay full was not good for my skin…which I’ve learned recently through an elimination diet). I tell my contemporary nutrition students that I’m not here to tell anyone what is “right” or “wrong” to eat in regards to categories of foods, but I will stick my neck out a little and emphasize the importance of quality. For example: Factory farming vs. small local sustainable farming That’s the type of thing I want to debate…not whether you eat an animal or not. So when it comes to something like Easter candy, there’s no contest. I don’t eat the junky version, and I don’t think you should either. I make my own. It still resembles the junk food (although I’m getting further and further removed from trying to make exact copies of the “real” junk foods). But it’s made with quality ingredients! And I have to say–this treat is nutritious enough for me to eat it for breakfast. Double Peanut Butter Chocolate Cups (like Reece’s, only much better!)
2 Tbsp melted coconut oil
4 Tbsp smooth peanut butter (I used Once Again American Classic—my favorite!)
1/2 tsp vanilla stevia or 1 Tbsp maple syrup (or other sweetener)
Stir until smooth.
Set 10 mini muffin pan liners onto a tray or plate. Pour one tablespoon into each muffin cup liner without dribbling it down the inside (or you’ll get streaks in the final product!). Put it in the freezer on a flat surface.
2 Tbsp melted coconut oil
4 Tbsp smooth peanut butter
1/4 cup unprocessed cocoa powder
1 tsp vanilla stevia or 1 Tbsp maple syrup (or other sweetener)
Note: If I’m making these for people who haven’t had stevia or don’t like it, I use grade B maple syrup in them too and just reduce the stevia amount (of course just taste test to see what the right amounts of sweetener are!). Stir until smooth. Remove the pan with the bottom layer from the freezer. Add 1 Tbsp of the chocolate mixture to each muffin cup liner. It will fill them all the way to the top! Put the tray back in the freezer for 15 minutes. Eat one! Then put the treats in a container in the fridge to store them. I think next time I might put the chocolate layer on the bottom—It’s a tiny bit more firm than the plain peanut butter layer.
News/Notes: I spent some time outside today, and it felt great—I’m feeling really grateful for the good weather. It always brightens things for me a bit. I’m busy gathering things to put into a giveaway here very soon, like I said I would when I reached 800 “Likes” on facebook. I want to make sure I share some of my most recent favorite things! This weekend I’ll have my favorite boy with me! I’m so excited—hopefully it will be nice out and we can ride bikes and play outside. The winter wasn’t too harsh this year, but it was still a long time to find things to do inside (and stay entertained) for an eight year-old! Of course, I also have a lot of work to do, but I think I have plenty of time to do it…and I’m planning to hit up a couple yoga classes tomorrow too (it will give my heel blisters a break too!). What do you have planned for the weekend? Do you find a good balance of work and play? What about healthy junk food? Do you distinguish between the quality of the foods you choose?