Chewy Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Blondies {Grain- & Gluten-free}

IMG_7769

I’m sitting here typing up this post on April 1st, while the sleet & snow falls outside. There are so many things I love about living in New England, but springtime snow is definitely NOT one of them. As much as I’m done with the cold, I’ve decided to embrace this (hopefully) last snowfall by staying inside, sipping piping hot tomato soup for lunch, getting in a lot of cuddles with the kiddos, cooking up a big comforting pot of Jessica’s chicken & dumplings for dinner, and baking these blondies.

IMG_7771

I derived inspiration for these chewy bars from Detoxinista’s Paleo Almond Butter Blondies, which I made a couple of weeks ago and we scarfed down in just a matter of days. I kept the same concept of keeping the blondies free of flour, but I swapped the almond butter for peanut butter and added an extra egg so they would turn out even chewier. I also cut down a bit on the sugar, but not to fear, they are perfectly sweet enough!

IMG_7779

The top of the blondies develops a crisp crust, but the insides stay soft and chewy; the perfect combination of textures in any kind of cookie bar. They’re super easy to whip up, take only 20 minutes to bake, and you probably already have all of the ingredients in your kitchen.

IMG_7781

These blondies turned out to be the perfect antidote to the crummy weather, but I have a feeling I’ll be making them over and over again even as the snow melts and it begins to actually feel like spring outside.

IMG_7783

 

Chewy Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Blondies {Grain- & Gluten-free}

by Lauren Zembron (inspired by Detoxinista)

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients (16 blondies)

  • 2 large eggs, preferably organic
  • 1 cup creamy/smooth all-natural unsweetened peanut butter, (the only ingredients should be peanuts and salt), preferably organic
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup unrefined granulated sugar, such as evaporated cane juice
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp Kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350°F and line an 8 inch square (or 7 x 11 rectangular) baking pan with parchment paper (leave a bit of excess paper hanging over the sides of the pan to allow for easy removal).

Whisk the eggs in a large mixing bowl until lightly beaten, then stir in peanut butter, vanilla, sugar, baking soda, and salt with a rubber spatula or spoon until smooth. The batter will be very thick.

Fold in chocolate chips.

Spoon the batter into the prepared pan, and spread it into an even layer. A pastry roller comes in handy here.

Baking for 20 minutes (or 19 minutes if using a 7 x 11 pan), or until the tops of the blondies are golden brown. They will rise in the oven, but then deflate while they cool.

Let blondies cool completely before lifting them out of the pan using the overhanging parchment paper. Cut into squares.

Store in the fridge.

Powered by Recipage

Light & Silky Chocolate Pudding Cups {Vegan}

IMG_7764

As we gear up for Valentine’s Day, chocolate recipes abound. While there’s certainly nothing wrong with splurging on decadent desserts every once in a while, (especially on a holiday), there are plenty of healthier versions of those indulgences if you’re interested in feeding your sweet tooth without consuming loads of sugar and saturated fat.

This chocolate pudding is one such dessert; it is rich, satisfying, and delicious, but it contains zero refined sugars or animal fats. Cashews comprise the base; and when they’re soaked and blended with water, cocoa powder, and a bit of maple syrup, a silky smooth pudding-like consistency emerges that makes the perfect vegan treat.

IMG_7766

These pudding cups make a great snack or dessert for kids and adults alike, so bust out your high speed blender and whip up this easy chocolate treat for those you love on Valentine’s Day!

IMG_7768

 

Light & Silky Chocolate Pudding Cups {Vegan}

by Lauren Zembron

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 0 minutes

Ingredients (2-4 servings)

  • 1 1/2 cups raw whole cashews
  • 6 Tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp instant espresso powder, optional (I would suggest omitting this if you’re serving the pudding to kids)
  • 1/2-3/4 cup cold filtered water

Instructions

Place cashews in a bowl of cold water and let soak for at least 4 hours, (or 8 hours if you do not have a high speed blender such as a Vitamix), then drain.

Place drained cashews, maple syrup, cocoa powder, espresso powder if using, and 1/2 cup cold filtered water in a high speed blender or food processor, and blend/process until perfectly smooth, adding more water (1 tablespoon at a time) as needed to reach desired consistency. Take care not to let the mixture start to heat up if you are using a high speed blender!

Chill in the refrigerator until fully cooled.

NOTE: If you are using a high speed blender, the end consistency should be light & airy. You may not achieve this exact texture if you are using a regular blender or food processor.

Powered by Recipage