Just in time for Valentine’s Day, I’ve got the perfect homemade treat for you (and the one you love)! These Peanut Butter Brownie Bars would also make a fun little treat to share with teachers and neighbors in honor of the upcoming “day of love,” especially if you’re me and you’ve made this recipe three times in the last week in order to get it just right. I can assure you though, the final outcome was worth the wait. It’s hard to beat that perfect combination of sweet chocolate and salty peanut butter! (Oh, and if you’re new here, FYI, the refined sugar in this recipe does break the rules, but it’s something we don’t mind in an occasional homemade treat now that our official 100-day pledge is over.)
It’s that time of year with parties and cookies and treats galore! I shared a picture on Instagram of the crazy amount of cookies that ended up at my neighbor’s cookie exchange over the weekend, and one commenter asked how I handle parties this time of year. So here’s the answer: I often eat at least a little before I go so I don’t show up too hungry. And then I follow the same advice I give my girls all the time…
At Holiday Parties: Eat a lot of what you know is good and only a little of what you know is bad (or aren’t sure about).
Avoiding highly processed food doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the fun because, let’s face it, it is fun to sample all the goods at a cookie party! But when I say sample, I mean SAMPLE. I probably only ate half-inch sized pieces of two thirds of the cookies there. The hostess also had bags available for taking cookies home, and I carefully selected about 8 or 10 cookies (avoiding any that obviously had artificial dyes or didn’t look homemade). And when I got home, I cut more half-inch sized pieces for my girls to try. It was fun for all! And while sugar is not a regular part of our diets we do think it’s okay in TRUE moderation. As a family, we usually indulge in about one sugary treat a week so last weekend’s cookie party was a fun way to do that!
Today I’ve got a tasty new recipe for you that happens to be the final installment in our blogger #RealFoodHoliday progressive dinner series! I don’t know about you, but I’ve personally never been a fan of pumpkin pie (is anyone really?), but I do LOVE some pumpkin cheesecake. I think this is such a great update to the traditional dessert we’ve all seen year after year, and with the pecan crust you can easily accommodate any gluten-free guests you might be entertaining.
If you (or your kids) are getting tired of the same old snacks I’ve got the perfect solution to switch things up …A Pumpkin Pie Green Smoothie! The kick of the fresh cinnamon along with the sweetness of the banana in this recipe make the spinach hardly even noticeable. So not only is this a fun seasonal drink, but one that’s good for you, too! And if your little ones turn their nose up to drinking something green how about putting it in an insulated cup they can’t see through? Just be sure to show them what they were drinking (and enjoying) afterward so they know greens aren’t so scary after all! If it goes well be sure to visit our friends over at Simple Green Smoothies for more tasty green smoothie recipes.
Every now and then we “break the rules” with a special homemade treat like this one that I’m sharing today. That’s because it’s unrealistic to think you’ll never indulge in a sweet treat again (oh, the horror!), and I fully recognize that when there is a special occasion, the homemade from scratch version (even with sugar and a little white flour) is far better than the store bought variety.
So on that note, I present to you…Homemade Ice Cream Cake! And I must share that my husband, who has never been much of a dessert person, was caught red handed having seconds of this cake! I about fell out of my chair when I saw that happen. So for a special celebration or occasional treat, this make-ahead dessert will surely be a crowd pleaser. Enjoy!
Making a Real Food Snow Cone honestly couldn’t be any easier. Think about it – a snow cone is basically just ice (that’s definitely real) topped off with highly processed syrup (that’s definitely not real).
Typical list of ingredients in Snow Cone Syrup: Water, high fructose corn syrup, citric acid, artificial flavor, propylene glycol, sodium benzoate (preservative), sodium saccharin, xanthan gum, FD&C blue #1.
There’s just no need for all these unwanted additives and chemicals when you can simply pour an organic juice concentrate mixture or homemade berry sauce over all that shaved ice instead!
You could use an ice cream scooper to make a nice round top on these snow cones, but this is how they come out of the machine. My daughters didn’t seem to mind at all. :)