Banana Peanut Butter Smoothie

Not another darn smoothie recipe… Ew!

No. This smoothie is not ew. This smoothie is a miracle smoothie. Why? Here’s why:

  • It tastes amazing
  • It’s nutritious
  • It’s super filling and will keep you satisfied until lunch
  • It has peanut butter and banana

There is only one thing wrong with this smoothie:

  • It’s ugly

And I’m sure we can all get over the fact that it is slightly horrible looking, right? You could possibly make it look prettier by throwing in some leafy greens. It would become even healthier.. yay! But I don’t know it might look even grosser.

Anyways, the looks are unimportant, but the taste is extremely important. It is sweet, creamy and peanut-buttery, but the texture is a bit different from your normal smoothie due to the oat powder. The oat powder and the peanut butter work together to make the most satiating drink I have ever had. Seriously. It makes for a good pre-run breakfast.

If you like peanut butter and bananas, I highly recommend that you make this as soon as possible. Like right now.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 frozen banana
  • 2 Tablespoons peanut butter
  • 1 cup almond milk   ( If unsweetened, you may want to add a tablespoon or so of sweetener)
  • 3/4 cup oats, ground into a fine powder (I used a food processor)
  • A few ice cubes

Directions:

  1. Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth.
  2. Drink it and be amazed.

I don’t have a picture of this smoothie yet, but I will try to get one soon. I took multiple pictures of it and they all disappeared.

For now, just picture a smoothie that is quite ugly indeed.

 

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Free-for-all Granola

Once upon a time, I was eating my 10,000th  bowl of store bought granola and yogurt. I love to read while I munch, so I grabbed the box and read the ingredient list on the back. Much to my surprise, the ingredients weren’t too crazy (keep in mind I was eating an “all natural” brand). It was just oats, sugar, oil, salt, vanilla, and some tasty preservatives. But even that short list didn’t inspire me. The next day I poured my 10,001th bowl of that sugary and overpriced granola. That continued for a very long time…Then I found out an amazing secret.

Making your own granola is very simple, totally not daunting, and so delicious. Not to mention healthy.

You need oats, a thick sweetener (think syrup, honey, or agave), nut butter, and some add-ins like dried fruit, nuts, or chocolate if you’re feeling a sweet craving. Oh, I almost always add vanilla and spices too. Gives the granola a nice flavor.

I call this Free-for-all Granola because you can use pretty much anything that’s lying around in your pantry. This recipe makes a small batch of granola because I only had two cups of oats in the house. It was really tragic. But you could double the recipe, or triple it. Or use almond butter instead of peanut butter. Or use honey instead of syrup. Use your imagination and make a delicious, homemade granola that you will want to eat in one sitting.

DSC_0334

Top this stuff with fruit- so good.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter (or any nut butter)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup (or other sticky sweetener)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • Any tasty add-ins you want

Directions: 

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Mix the oats, salt, and cinnamon in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, melt the peanut butter in the microwave then add the syrup. Stir well. Add the vanilla.
  2. Pour the peanut butter mixture over the oats. Mix until all the oats are covered. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat mat. Spread the granola evenly over the baking sheet, taking extra special care to have large clusters. Large clusters are critical.
  3. Bake for 20-25 minutes, stirring frequently. (It burns easily!) Once it is done baking, let it cool on the baking sheet for about 15 minutes. Pour it into an airtight container. Eat it all day, every day.

Granola is the savior of the world. Make it now. Check your pantries. So simple, so good, so easy. That line was so cheesy.

I’m sorry.

Whole Wheat Banana Pancakes

Today is a very, very sad day. A true tragedy for me, my sister, and all the other kids in our area.

Today is the last day of summer vacation.

I woke up this morning, feeling miserable and down in the dumps. When I woke up, I trudged into the kitchen, almost eating a boring breakfast of a bagel and peanut butter. Then I got an idea. A delicious idea. A pancake idea. I hopped on the computer and checked Sally’s Baking Addiction for a tasty (and healthy!) recipe. These whole wheat pancakes are darn good even though I um, forgot to put in the eggShhhh. The ripe banana adds a natural sweetness while the Greek yogurt makes them moist and flavorful. A warm, healthy stack of pancakes will make anyone’s morning (or evening) better. They cured my down in the dumps-ness and fueled my run.

I am going to miss making breakfast in the mornings. Why, why must school start so early? 

Ingredients: 

  • 1 1/3 cup whole wheat flour

    DSC_0321

    Peaches and peanut butter on pancakes is actually good.

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup milk (skim, 1%, 2%, almond, soy, whatever works best for you)
  • 1/2 cup mashed banana (about 1 large banana)
  • 2 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt (plain, vanilla, nonfat, full-fat, whichever you prefer)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions: 

  1. Whisk flour, salt, baking powder, and cinnamon in a large bowl. In a different bowl, combine the egg, milk, banana, brown sugar, yogurt, and vanilla. Stir until very few lumps remain.
  2. Make a well in the dry ingredients. Pour in the wet ingredients and stir batter gently. Don’t mix too much, over-mixing will cause grossness.
  3. Heat a skillet over medium heat. Coat pan with cooking spray, butter, or oil. Make the pancakes any size you like. A common measurement is about 1/4 cup batter per pancake. Let the pancake cook until bubbles start forming at the top. Flip, then let cook for 2-3 minutes more. Keep the made pancakes in a 200 degree oven to prevent cold, sad breakfast.
  4. Once all the pancakes are made, cover them with delicious toppings, then eat them. I used peanut butter, cinnamon, and yogurt. Yum.

You’ll love these sadness curing pancakes. I sure needed them today.

This tasty recipe came from Sally’s Baking Addiction. I should probably change my blog name to A Summary of Sally’s Baking Addiction by Grace. Here’s the original recipe: http://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2014/01/02/whole-wheat-banana-pancakes/

Pumpkin Frappuccino

When you ask people what their favorite thing about fall is, they usually say something about the nice weather, the beautiful colors, and the cozy clothing. My favorite part of fall? Pumpkin flavored everything. Pumpkin yogurt, pumpkin cream cheese, pumpkin drinks, pumpkin donuts, the list goes on forever. My pumpkin craving usually strikes in July, so I can’t buy anything pumpkin-y. But I can make it.

This drink is sweet, full of pumpkin flavors and spices, and it is so much healthier than something you buy at a coffee shop. Bonus: it’s cheap. There is no longer a need to break your bank for this frap. Forget Christmas in July.

I want Autumn in July.

DSCN0927

This drink rocks.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups cold coffee
  • 1 1/4 cups milk of choice
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoons cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Directions: 

  1. Combine milk, pumpkin, syrup, and spices. Place in a shallow container (the original recipe suggested using an ice cube tray, but I didn’t have any of those lying around) and stick it into the freezer. Freeze until frozen. I let mine freeze overnight.
  2. Once the pumpkin is frozen and the coffee is chilled, dump it into a blender and whip it up. Mine took about 5 minutes to blend up because the blender I used is probably 20 years old. Top your drink off with whipped cream and enjoy. Very delicious. Actually has pumpkin in it.

Sally, from Sally’s Baking Addiction, has been the provider of this amazing recipe. I basically live on her website. Check out the original recipe here: http://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2013/08/27/skinny-pumpkin-frappuccino/