Category Archives: almond butter

Tropical Traditions Coconut Flour Review + Gluten Free Healthy Coconut Flour Waffles

Tropical Traitions Organic Coconut Flour

If you have been reading this blog, you know how much I love coconut flour. It’s rich in fiber and protein (just two tablespoons has 6g of fiber and 2g of protein!). Coconut flour is also gluten free and very low in carbohydrates. Just two tablespoons contain 8g of carbohydrate (wheat flour, and is extremely low on the glycemic index, so it is a flour safe for people with blood sugar issues.

Coconut flour is my favorite flour to cook with, and I’m always experimenting with it in the kitchen. From breads to cookies, waffles to enchiladas (really!), it can be a very versatile flour to cook with. I also like combining coconut flour with other gluten free, grain free and low glycemic flours, like almond flour. Coconut flour is less expensive than almond flour, but both are really good to have in the kitchen. Make your own easily digestible, soaked almond flour.

For me this flour is a miracle, because I follow a primal/paleo diet (I vary from time to time between the two), with no grains or gluten. I used to be into whole wheat flour, but we’ve broken up since then. I thought it was healthy for me, until I found out how I felt without it. It still interacts with my other family members, but I don’t see it anymore.

Because coconut flour doesn’t contain gluten, like wheat flours, you have to add an agent that acts like gluten. Eggs are the best way to provide this gluten like quality. Because coconut flour contains a lot of fiber, it is known as a very thirsty flour, meaning it means quite a bit of liquid (from the eggs, milks, oil) to have the same consistency as the batter it would have been if it was made with wheat flour. This makes the end result contain more protein (from the eggs), and possible more good fat (from oils like coconut or olive), helping to lower the glycemic index even more. These macronutrients, combined with the large amounts of fiber in the coconut flour, are also very satiating.

Gluten Free, Grain Free Spinach Enchiladas with Coconut Flour Crepes as the Tortillas

Tropical Traditions is my favorite place to purchase my coconut flour; in fact, it’s the only place. The company holds a very strong and large customer base, and its high standards for business integrity are top notch. They are literally my favorite company, besides my own. 😉 Tropical Traditions sent me a package of coconut flour to review on my website, and I have to say, I am already almost half way through the bag. You only have to use a small amount to equal wheat flour, so it is very economical. To make up for the volume of a traditional recipe, just add more eggs and oil (or milk).

The other day I purchased a waffle maker off eBay for $4. It’s in great condition, and I am so grateful I found it. I bought it specifically for making coconut flour waffles. It took me about four times to get this recipe right, but I finally made it. Testing a recipe, with the desire of it coming out right, then having it fail, is very frustrating. So, that’s why I’m here to help you not experience that frustration (I threw a spatula on the floor)! This waffle recipe will turn out perfect, as long as you use eggs. You can experiment with using an egg replacement, but I wouldn’t know if it would work. I might try a flaxseed egg and see how that turns out. If it does, I will provide an update.

Gluten Free, Grain Free Waffles

When I first tried out my waffle iron the first few times, the waffles kept sticking. I read somewhere that you need to oil them, heat them, turn off the heat, oil them again, and after that repetition, your future waffles shouldn’t stick (as long as you grease the maker every time you use it). Also, don’t skimp out on the fat in this waffle, or the texture from the honey, as it prevents sticking, and helps the waffle hold together. This fat in here is extremely nourishing, so don’t be scared. These waffles are light and fluffy, not crisp, so be careful when taking them out, as they can tear if you’re rough with them. For a crispier waffle, freeze overnight and toast in a toaster oven in the morning.

Gluten Free Banana Coconut Flour Waffles

Gluten Free Coconut Flour Waffles

½ small banana

1 egg + 1 egg white (you need the fat in the egg yolk for this recipe to turn out)

½ TBSP. of Melted Butter or Coconut Oil

1 TBSP. Coconut Milk

1 tsp. Almond Butter (or your favorite nut butter—won’t affect the taste)

1 ½ tsp. of Honey (I used 1 tsp. of Guar Gum mixture + ½ tsp. Honey to lower the sugar content)

2 drops Stevia, optional

1 ½ TBSP. of Coconut Flour (1 TBSP + 1 ½ tsp.)

¼ tsp. Baking soda

Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth.

Grease your waffle iron extremely well with coconut oil or butter (no-calorie spray oils don’t seem to work—olive oil didn’t necessarily work, either).

Heat your waffle iron. Once heated, pour batter in the middle, making sure to leave some room on the edges. Press the top down on your waffle maker and bake according to your maker’s instructions.

Carefully take the waffle out of your waffle iron. These are fluffy and flimsy.

Top with a little pure, organic maple syrup, honey or you favorite toppings.

-There you go. A morning breakfast that will provide you with a complete protein and enough fiber to keep you going. The fat in the coconut milk and oil will also help fuel your body throughout the day. Some people find that with a waffle recipe, it is best to beat the egg whites seperately, until stiff, and then fold it into the batter. I haven’t tried that yet, but will, and will get back to you on the final outcome. I wonder if it would make the waffle crispier?

Don’t forget to check out Tropical Traditions website. Not only do they sell their own organic coconut flour, but they also carry coconut oils, palm shortening (no trans fats), organic flours, sweeteners and nut butters. You can also find more coconut flour recipes at their recipe site, FreeCoconutRecipes.com.

If you do decide to purchase Tropical Traditions coconut flour (and believe me, you can’t beat the price, or the quality), then be sure to use my customer number at checkout. This will get you a FREE book with your order, titled: “Virgin Coconut Oil: How it Has Changed People’s Lives and How it can Change Yours.”. At checkout, underneath, “How Did You Hear About Us?”, pull the drop down box to “Referred by a Friend”. Then a box will appear to type in the User ID of the friend (me) who referred you. This number is 5304960. Voila! A $25 book, free with your purchase!

This is The Healthy Advocate.

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Winter Recipe Roundup – Healthy, Gluten Free, Sugar Free and Sooo Good

Click on the picture above to see descriptions

On the last day of winter this year, I decided to squeeze in as much last minute holiday treats as I could. I love wintertime, and I wanted to get the most out of it this year, for some reason. However, when spring came, it was fantastic, because as you can see above in the middle picture (click to enlarge), the first full day of spring was filled with 3 inches of snow–in Texas!
I go to school in Houston but visit Dallas (my home) as often as I can. For spring break I went, and the last day I was there I was running and playing in the snow like a little kid again. How I wish I took more pictures! I made two snow angels, a snow man and several hundred snowballs to throw at the window to get my preteen sister and her friends to wake up (they didn’t come out by the way–apparently they’re too cool for that).
Anyway, back to the recipes. I made quite a bit, unintentionally, and shared them with my mom–brothers and sisters are more into the processed food, promoting its taste and “quality” while never attempting to try real food. Oh well; there is only so much you can do to try to promote health and wellness in others. However, I am “The Healthy Advocate”, so I shall try more, without being too overbearing.
OK, I have strayed again, and I will stay on topic. Enter Coconut Flour Gingerbread Cookies! Sugar free, dairy free and gluten free, I might add (did I also mention they were grain free?). I have never had any luck making a recipe completely vegan when it comes to coconut flour. It seems as though the eggs are an integral part of the recipe in order to bind everything together properly. If anyone has any tips on this, please let me know.
My cookies came out thin, mainly because that was the way I wanted them. You can make them thicker by adding more batter to the cookie cutter (see recipe). Also, they are very soft, not crispy like other gingerbread cookies. I think next time I will try almond flour next winter for a crispier cookie.
The only trouble I had with the recipe was the coconut oil frosting/glaze. Sometimes a chef can’t be patient–you must be when it comes to this recipe! You must first allow the cookies to completely cool before frosting, otherwise the coconut oil will soak into the warm cookie, and won’t make that beautiful hard coating that you see in the picture below.
One more note: The nutrition information below is calculated based on the number of cookies I made. You may need to adjust the numbers when you actually make yours. The entire recipe comes out at 9 grams of digestible carbs! Which means if you ate one cookie, you would only get 0.6 grams of digestible carbohydrates, which is pretty cool (only if you are able to make 16 cookies, like I did). It also contains a whopping 1.5 grams of high quality protein, due to the eggs and coconut flour. What a nutritious and guilt free treat!
This recipe was adapted from SimplyCoconut.com. They have fantastic coconut flour recipes. I haven’t tried them all out yet, but I’m getting there.
Coconut Flour Gingerbread Cookies


Makes about 16 cookies, depending on the size of your cookie cutters.
Ingredients

1/4 + 1/8 cup Coconut Flour (6 TBSP total)
1/2 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
1/2 tsp. Ground Ginger
1/4 Cup Xylitol + 2 TBSP Xylitol (or favorite sugar free sweetener)
1/4 tsp. Pure Stevia Powder
1/8 tsp. salt
1/4 cup dairy free milk–Coconut milk might be best
3 TBSP butter, ghee or coconut oil, melted
3 eggs OR 6 egg whites
Directions

Combine all dry ingredients in one bowl and whisk together. Set aside.
Combine the milk, melted butter or oil and the eggs in a separate bowl. Mix until blended.
Pour in the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and whisk until smooth. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes.
On a greased glass baking dish, place your desired cookie cutter. Pour a couple of tablespoons worth of batter in the cookie cutter and press batter into the shape. Slowly unmold the cookie so all that is left is the batter in the desired shape. Repeat with same or different cookie cutters.
Bake at 400 degrees for 12-14 minutes. Cool completely before frosting.
Coconut Oil Frosting/Glaze

1/4 Cup – 1/2 Cup melted coconut oil
Stevia, to taste
Directions

Pour sweetened coconut oil on top of cooled cookies one TBSP at a time and spread. Cool cookies again so the glaze will harden.
Nutrition Information

Per Cookie w/o Glaze & Made w/ Whole Eggs

Calories: 68.15
Fat: 4 g
Digestible Carb: 0.6 g
Fiber: 0.95 g
Protein: 1.5 g

Per Cookie w/o Glaze & Made w/ Egg Whites

Calories: 60.65
Fat: 2.9 g
Digestible Carb: 0.6 g
Fiber: 0.95 g
Protein: 1.5 g
Sugar: 0.19 g (naturally occurring and bound w/ fiber in the coconut flour)


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Now for the nut-butter cups. These “Reese’s” inspired chocolate covered peanut butter cup is one of my favorite, because I combine different and healthier nuts other than peanut. Peanuts can contain a toxin around them the majority of the time, and are high in inflammatory oils and fats (omega-6’s). I use a blend of organic peanut butter, walnut butter and almond butter (homemade, of course–recipe coming soon).
Homemade Reese’s can take some time, but it is SO worth it, especially when you consider the health of your body. Rather than giving your body all the sugar and inflammatory fats that are found in regular candies, you know you are giving your body the anti-aging, anti-inflammatory fats from walnuts, the anti-oxidants from pure chocolate, and the metabolism boosting qualities of coconut oil. Also, you won’t be bombarding your body with sugar.
This is my first shot at these healthy versions of nut butter cups and balls. I will be trying them again at Easter, and will revisit them again for you guys. You will need paper cupake/muffin liners, cutting the paper “walls” of the liner so that they only stand about 1/2 inches tall.
Homemade “Reese’s” Nut Butter Cups


Makes 14-16 Chocolate Covered Nut Butter Cups

Ingredients

4 oz unsweetened baking chocolate, bar
-OR- 12 TBSP Unsweetened Cocoa Powder mixed with 4 TBSP melted coconut oil

1 tsp. honey, or more depending on how sweet you want your chocolate to be

1/2 cup of your favorite nut butter (I used peanut, almond, sunflower and walnut)
-Sweeten with powdered xylitol, erythritol, honey or stevia, if desired

Directions

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler. Using a small paintbrush or a spoon and your fingertips (like me), spread a teaspoon and a half into a paper muffin cup. Spread around to coat the entire cup (may need more than 1 1/2 tsp.). Continue to do this until about 10-12 muffin cups are all coated. Place in freezer to firm.
Meanwhile, stir the nut butter with your sweetener, if using. Take the hardened chocolate cups out of freezer and put nut butter in each cup, making sure you fill the entire cup–but not too much; you don’t want to fill it up to the top.
Place the muffin cups in the freezer again. Melt chocolate while you wait about 5 minutes, if you need to, and then take out the muffin cups once again. Spread remaining melted chocolate over the nut butter inside the chocolate shells, and spread over to completely cover. Once done, place in freezer again
Wait until it is solid enough to unmold, and then store in freezer or refrigerator. It can melt fast at room temperature if you are using the coconut oil and cocoa powder mixture, so keep in the refrigerator.
With any remaining chocolate and nut butter, make chocolate covered nut butter balls, or make more chocolate covered nut butter cups. Or, use your imagination, be creative, and tell me what you do!


Nutrition Information
Per Chocolate Covered Nut Cup

Calories: 86.25
Fat: 7 g
Protein: 4.5 g
Digestible Carb: 2.7 g
Fiber: 1.75 g
Sugar: 0.8 g (natural–with 1 tsp. honey)


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Well there is the winter recipe round up. No savory dishes this season, but the upcoming ones you will see more healthy breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack ideas.
This has been The Healthy Advocate.