Dessert

Healthy Sweet Potato Pie Recipe

There is something about the holidays that Causes us to crave familiar, homey sweet treats.

Sugar loaded cakes, cookies, fudge and pies are just a few of the not-so-healthy choices that can and many times do, put a halt to all the hard work families have put into creating a healthier lifestyle.

Enjoying tasty holiday treats doesn't have to stop completely when you're taking the steps to get your family healthy. Instead of feeling guilty for enjoying holiday goodies or forgoing them altogether and feeling like a scrooge, try the following:

  1. Choose healthier, replacement ingredients to include in your desserts.

  2. Reduce the amount of sugar you use in your recipes.

  3. Limit your portions.

These are just 3 strategies you can use any time of year, but especially during the holidays, to keep your healthy lifestyle from derailing! Here are just a few reasons this sweet potato pie is a family favorite in our house!

  • Sweet potatoes are truly a SUPERFOOD! Vitamin-packed, they have a reputation for boosting the immune system, which of course is especially helpful this time of year!

  • The benefits of eating less sugar are almost too numerous to list, but some of the top reasons are: weight loss, better heart health, and strong teeth. This recipe uses much less sugar and even that can be easily replaced.

  • It doesn't take a big helping of this pie to satisfy the taste buds of even the sweetest tooth! So healthy portions can be maintained!

Healthy Sweet Potato Pie Recipe

How To Make It:

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups sweet potatoes, mashed

  • 1/4 pound (1 stick) butter or ghee, softened

  • 2 eggs, separated

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (or, a sprinkle!)

  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger

  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk

  • 1/4 cup white sugar

  • 1 (9 inch) unbaked pie crust

Instructions:

  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Place pie crust in pie pan. In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine sweet potatoes, butter, egg yolks, brown sugar, salt, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and evaporated milk and mix together.

  2. In another bowl, beat egg whites on high until stiff peaks form, then add the sugar. (Hint: Use a metal bowl and freeze it for 10 minutes first - the peaks will form quicker!) Gently fold egg whites into the first mixture with the sweet potatoes.

  3. Pour batter into unbaked pie crust and bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350 and bake until firm (approximately 30 minutes).

Go ahead, try this healthy Sweet Potato Pie this year and see what ya’ll think!

By making better choices for your holiday desserts, limiting sugar and sampling foods in moderation, your family can enjoy the delicacies of this festive season with little sacrifice and no guilt! 

Healthy Cereal Cookies {Gluten-Free!}

Who doesn't love a FRESH new healthy cookie recipe, especially when it's actually got nutrition in it? My kids were so happy when I tested this recipe this past weekend (it's 100% my invention by the way!) and we were all happy when they actually turned out!

Now that gluten is a nemesis to my body's healing from an autoimmune disorder, I avoid it as much as I can...but that doesn't mean I love all things gluten-free - I can't stand how dense many things turn out with a lot of gluten free flours out there.

So this recipe uses a $5 gluten free flour from my neighborhood grocery, nothing too fancy. I bake so rarely now, it's worth the splurge! Try it and see what I mean. No rock-hard recipe here!

Ingredients

ingredients pic healthy cookies.jpg
  • 1 cup gluten-free flour

  • 1/2 cup ground flaxseed

  • 1 tsp baking soda

  • 1 tsp baking powder

  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 1 stick butter, softened

  • 1/3 cup coconut oil

  • 1/3 cup white sugar

  • 1/3 cup brown sugar (or 2/3 cup brown sugar and no white)

  • 1/4 cup maple syrup

  • 2 eggs (we use cage-free, grain-fed)

  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract

  • 4 scoops fruit and veggies powder (like the one pictured)

  • 2 cups bran cereal (fun sub: fruit n yogurt bran cereal!)

Instructions

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  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Place parchment paper on 2 cookie pans.

  2. Combine the dry ingredients (first 6 ingredients listed!) and stir together, then set aside.

  3. Mash the butter, coconut oil, and sugars and syrup together by hand, or use a handheld mixer for ease. Set this bowl aside.

  4. Whip the 2 eggs, adding in the vanilla extract. Add into the bowl with the sugars, butter and oil and stir all wet ingredients together well.

  5. On low speed with the hand mixer (or by hand) slowly add in the dry mixture to the wet ingredients bowl, a little at a time.

  6. Then slowly, add in the fruit and veggie powder and bran flakes until fully mixed.

  7. Drop a Tablespoon of dough on the trays, about 1.5 inches apart to allow for rising.

  8. Bake on 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, check the cookies, if they are browning on edges, they are done! Remove them from oven and let them sit on hot cookie pan for about 2-3 minutes.

  9. Move them to a cookie rack to finish cooling.

  10. Ready to enjoy! You can freeze extras for quick grab snacks for kid's lunches, after-school snack or part of an easy breakfast by serving them with a smoothie or banana!

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If you like, you can always add in nuts, dried fruit or mini-chocolate chips for extra fun or texture. You could also replace the coconut oil with peanut butter, and add in 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips to have a PB and choco snack!

These "cookies" contain enough healthy nutrients to be considered equal to a granola bar! Delicious, nutritious snacks! (This recipe is full of protein, fiber, omega 3 fatty acids, vitamins and minerals...mmmm!)

After you try them, pop back over here and tell us what you think!

Bet your kids/family won't even know they are eating such a great blend of nutrition!

Mini Peanut-Chip Cookies

Everyone loves the classic chocolate chip cookie, so we've been on a search for a low-sugar variety that still tastes good.  On our quest for sugar-less desserts that are still yummy and satisfying, we found this little gem. 

Little is the correct descriptive, but these pint-sized cookies still pack a sweet tooth fixin’ crunch!

Mini Peanut-Chip Cookie Recipe

mini peanut chip cookies

Ingredients

•    1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
•    1 tsp baking soda
•    1/4 tsp salt
•    1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
•    1/2 cup peanut butter
•    1/2 cup packed brown sugar
•    1/4 cup sugar
•    1/4 cup milk (Soy)
•    1 egg
•    1 tsp vanilla extract
•    1/3 cup mini chocolate chips

Instructions

1.    Heat oven to 350 degrees.  In medium bowl, whisk together first three dry ingredients, set aside.  In large bowl, beat peanut butter and butter on medium speed 2 minutes, or until creamy.  (I hand beat it – and it turns out creamy enough.)  Add brown sugar and sugar, beat 2 minutes.  Beat in milk, egg and vanilla.  Fold in dry ingredients until just combined.  Stir in chips – chill dough for 15 minutes.

2.    For each cookie, roll 2 tsp dough into a ball and place on baking sheet 2 inches apart.  With floured fork, flatten each ball into a round, making a crosshatch pattern.

3.    Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes, until lightly browned around edges.  Let cool on sheets 1 minute, then transfer the cookies to a rack to finish cooling.

*Original recipe found in Family Circle – "Coach Bess" altered for sugar content.

Berry Nutty Smoothie

I have discovered how to have real, lasting (non-crash-and-burn) ENERGY in the morning - and it's with my Berry Nutty Smoothie!  Now, don’t get me wrong, I love my cup of coffee, too...so of course I was THRILLED to find that coffee, made "right" has powerful benefits! (Did I just say coffee has BENEFITS? Yes! More on that in another post soon!) 

This smoothie is full of vitamin, mineral and energy-increasing benefits! It is the answer for morning POWER...raise your hand if that sounds like something you could use!

It is like drinking your vitamins every morning! Only takes about 3-5 minutes to whip up and enjoy...oh, and even my picky kids love it!

Smoothies have been around a long time,

so this idea of a liquid breakfast is nothing new.  There are many variations of healthy shakes - many brands, powders, and formulas to choose from out there. But so many of those are loaded with sugar, additives, coloring, etc...why not go FRESH instead? It's too easy! Like so many of my busy-bee clients, I used to struggle with getting a good breakfast eaten before the busy day started...so this easy, quick smoothie has solved that problem!

Are you ready for more energy in your mornings without the “help” of sugar or caffeine? 

Here you go!

Berry Nutty Smoothie

Ingredients

smoothie step 1.jpg

1/2 cup plain or low-sugar Greek yogurt
1 cup unsweetened almond, coconut, rice, or soy milk
1 Tbsp ground flaxseed (start with less for first couple smoothies)
1/2 cup fresh or frozen berries such as strawberries, cherries, or blueberries
1 banana for creamier, sweeter smoothie
1 Tbsp Coconut Oil or other Nut Butter
5-6 cubes ICE (If berries aren’t frozen)
1/2 cup water, or more if desired
OPTIONAL but RECOMMENDED: add in 1-2 handfuls FRESH baby spinach or kale

Instructions

  1. Blend at high speed until ingredients are smooth. (Add water or milk as needed to achieve desired consistency!)

  2. Makes 2 – 3 smoothies

This snack also makes a great meal replacement, afternoon snack, or dessert when that sweet tooth starts calling!  FULL of protein, natural energy and detoxifying ingredients, this smoothie is more than a non-guilty pleasure - it's GREAT for your health!

smoothie Jov.jpg

Squirt a little whipped cream over the top for a beautiful and delicious splurge.  We often serve it up in wine glasses, just to feel pampered!

Are smoothies new to you? Or something you've been including in your healthy habits all along? Would love to hear from you in the comments below! Oh and be sure to JOIN THE CONVERSATION in our FREE community! We talk smoothies, FRESH food and healthy habits DAILY over there!