Category Archives: coconut palm sugar

Coconut Part Two: Gluten Free, Grain Free and Sugar Free Healthy Coconut Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting


This photo comes straight from the original recipe found at Healthy Indulgences. My photo will soon replace this, as the current one I own does not do the recipe justice. Anyone want to help me out on my photography skills, or lack there of?


I have made some great things from many different bloggers and websites available on the net. It’s been an amazing experience to see different recipes that are healthy, gluten free and refined sugar free, and then putting my own little twist on them. They also give me wonderful new ideas for brand new recipes that I can bring to you to really liven up your own menu.

But, these cupcakes are so good, you would NOT know they were healthy. Believe me, you won’t. I’ve adapted this recipe from Healthy Indulgences (one of the few blogs I go to to find basic recipes to then go out and experiment with my own). Lauren is around my age, and we’re both college-bound, gluten and sugar free healthy advocates. She’s a bit more experienced then me (OK, a lot more than me), but I’m getting there. I’m glad to have her, as well as others, be my “teachers”, even though they don’t know that they are just yet.
These cupcakes are grain free, meaning that they are going to be low in carbohydrates and gluten will be nonexistent. Many people find that they can lose weight, gain energy and vitality, reverse digestive disorders or dis-eases, clear up skin, etc., quite easily when they cut grains out of their diet. If you want to read my own grain free experiences, read my story here.
The coconut cupcakes surprisingly don’t taste too much like coconut, but you can still sense that tropical feel once you bite into this amazing superfood; and as your tongue reacts to the flavors while you eat this slowly, you energy starts to feel refreshed, replenished and your mood can stay elevated for hours. OK, maybe nothing is that good–but these do come close. They definitely WILL NOT result in an energy crash like other cupcakes, because again, they are low in digestible carbohydrates (particularly refined carbohydrates, which can turn into sugar quite quickly in your body) and refined white sugar, all of which can cause a quick insulin spike and crash, resulting in low energy. So you really are good to go with these.
Be sure to try and pulverize the dried coconut in either a blender, Magic Bullet, coffee grinder, ect., as you really do want a find powder. I used a food processor the first time, and it resulted in half powder, half coconut “bits”. If you don’t mind having those “bits” in your ‘bites’, then it shouldn’t bother you. Me, I would rather have a cupcake with a smooth texture. Also, make sure you are using real eggs and REAL butter or oil, as using replacements will result in a different texture and you will also be missing out on any health benefits the egg yolk, butter or coconut oil provides.
Now, on with the recipe. I tend to speak too much about the recipes I post, which will come to an end on the next one, I promise. This is a super quick, easy treat for you or anyone you know, and can be eaten as dessert, snack, or even be a high protein, high fiber meal replacement.
P.S. This cupcake is full of coconut, so you know that the fat in this recipe will not be stored as fat, but be used as energy very quickly in your body, even resulting in a higher metabolic rate. Read more here about coconut in the PART 1 of this series.
Ingredients:

1/4 cup blanched dry almonds, pulverized into a flour
2 cups unsweetened, dry coconut, pulverized into a fine flour, meal or powder
1 Tbsp. Coconut Flour
-OR Protein Powder
1/2 tsp. Grain Free Baking Powder
1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
3 eggs
1/4 cup coconut or almond milk (or whole, organic raw milk)
2 TBSP. Organic Butter or Coconut Oil, melted
Sweeteners

1/4 cup Xylitol
1/4 cup Coconut Palm Sugar
1/4-1/2 tsp. Stevia Extract Powder, to taste
-OR-
3/4-1 cup natural sugar substitute
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Set oven temperature to 325 degrees F.
Mix the almond flour, dried coconut meal/flour/powder and coconut flour in a small bowl. Add salt and baking powder. Mix together well and set aside.
In another bowl, combine vanilla extract with 3 eggs. Next add the sweeteners. Stir to combine. Add the dry ingredients in with the sweeteners. Mix well. You can also do this in just one big bowl, if you so desire.
Line 8-9 big muffin cups with paper liners. Or, line a mini muffin pan with 20 mini muffin liners. Grease the paper liners well.
Evenly distribute the batter into the muffin cups, making sure that you are giving enough room for rising to occur.
Bake for about 20 minutes, or until “springy” to the touch. Set out to cool and store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week (but they will be gone much sooner than that!).
Carob added to the final frosting. As I said before, my photos do not seem to do it any justice. Reading up on photography!

Yield: 20 mini cupcakes, or 9 regular sized cupcakes
Healthy Buttercream Frosting

4-6 TBSP. Organic Butter, or Coconut Oil (hard)
1/4 tsp. Stevia Extract Powder
or 1/4 cup Xylitol
1 TBSP. Coconut Milk (optional)
Blend the butter or coconut oil with the stevia or xylitol. Add the coconut milk, if using. Frost cool cupcakes (make sure they are cool) and place in refrigerator for storage.
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There you go, for a healthy, meal on the go or quick snack or dessert to help support your healthy lifestyle. Please check out the ingredients you may have not been familiar with anywhere on this blog by doing a quick search, or look them up on your favorite search engine to find out more. Super healthy and extremely nutritious.
Try these out and tell me what you think! I know you won’t be dissappointed.
This is The Healthy Advocate.
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My Preferred Sweeteners

OK, I said I would post the next day, but man was I wrong. Life has a pretty sneaky way of making things a bit hectic, but I was able to handle it with ease (thanks to meditation, yoga and deep breathing!). I went to a Macbeth audition (what, you didn’t know I liked to act?), and was cast the part of a witch. Is it strange that I was actually wanting to get that role? I’m also playing an old man. Can’t wait to get into it.

With all these interruptions (but good interruptions) I felt really bad for not blogging, because I really wanted to share with you guys and follow up on the last post about artificial sweeteners.
In this post, I told you I was going to talk about my absolute love for two sweeteners; then I’ll tell you of two other sweeteners that I haven’t tried but want to very soon (does anyone want to purchase them for me?? :)).
Xylitol


I absolutely LOVE this sugar alcohol and use it very regularly. **But first a caution: using it regularly in large amounts will make you very “regular”, so to speak. Sugar alcohols are known to have a laxative effect when taken in excess, so when you find yourself loving this sweetener after I get done talking about it, be sure to use it with care.**
Xylitol is a naturally occurring sugar alcohol that is found in most edible plant sources, and is usually extracted from the fibers of fruits or vegetables (if anyone else knows where this is found and extracted, let me know). Some times it is called wood sugar or birch sugar, due to where it comes from.
The sweetness of xylitol is about the same as sugar, with 40% less calories per gram (about 2.5 cal./g compared to white sugar at 4 cal./gram) than white sugar.
The taste of xylitol is absolutely amazing, to me, as it is very cool and “clean”, and it doesn’t make you feel naughty by eating by the spoonful (actually, I don’t recommend doing this!).
The glycemic index of Xylitol is 13 compared to white sugar which is around 60-65. The glycemic index is a scale from 0-100 that rates the effect of foods on blood sugar levels (0 being no effect, 100 being a big effect). I like following a low-glycemic diet most of the time, but sometimes this system isn’t always accurate (I will blog more about this topic later).
So, Xylitol has very little effect on isulin levels, which is why I enjoy it so much, because I believe that keeping our insulin levels low we can achieve optimal health and wellness–anti-aging, healthy weight, healthy skin, hair and nails, improved mood and concentration, healthy leptin and grehlin signaling, etc.
Xylitol is also relatively inexpensive compared to other sugar alcohols. There is erythritol, which I haven’t tried but I have heard many good things about. It isn’t as sweet, and it’s more expensive, but it has virtually no effect on our insulin levels which is a plus! However, I really do believe that xylitol might be the safest sugar alcohol out there. Dr. Joseph Mercola even agrees (my hero).
A couple of interesting things I learned about xylitol was that
1. Our bodies produce up to 15 grams of xylitol a day. So you know it’s natural!
2. It’s a sweetener used widely in Finland. Who knew? Well, I guess they do, obviously.
I like to purchase my Xylitol online, because it is less expensive than buying 1 lb at the health food store for $7. Online, I can get 3 lbs for $17.99 (these prices, or the availability sometimes change, though). This is the brand I like.
Stevia


Stevia is an amazing herb native to South America. It has been used for centuries as a natural sweetener, and is becoming more known throughout North America (see the new products that contain this sweetener mixed with sugar alcohol Erythritol: PureVia and Truvia).
This sweetener is up to 200 times sweeter than regular sugar, so if you purchase pure stevia (up to 90-90% stevosides), only about 1/2 tsp. needs to equal 1 cup of sugar! It also has no known effect on insulin levels, which is another reason why I like it.
A good source to purchase stevia is from Amazon, Vitacost.com or iHerb. Sometimes I have purchased pure stevia on eBay, but be wary because you don’t always know the source of the product. Many people like the NuNaturals Stevia brand the best; I also think it’s popular because the price is relatively low compared to other sweeteners. Look around until you can find the one you like.
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Usually when I make/bake and have to use a sweetener, I tend to blend stevia, xylitol and small amounts of raw honey and organic Sucanat, a less refined sugar that still contains many nutrients present in the sugar cane. I also like to make sure there is enough fiber (coconut flour, anyone?) and good quality fat (there are some recipes I need to show you that use healthy fats while still lowering the calories of different foods) to slow down the absorption of the added sugars (though still very little).
For now I will leave you to your exploration of alternative sweeteners. Before I go, I would like for anyone who has every tried coconut palm sugar to please raise their hand. How do you like it? I know it has the same calories as sugar, but is much lower on the glycemic index. I shall find a good source so I can do a little experimentation.
Also, if you have any questions or comments, please post them–I’m here to help you! I love finding things out about nutrition, health and wellness, so anything will be appreciated. Tell you friends, too, by sharing this blog or this post via “Add This” at the top of this blog. I’ll love you forever! (Although I already do.)
Until next time, this has been the Healthy Advocate.
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