My mom used to grow zucchini in her garden in Minnesota. She was the type of nonchalant gardener who allowed the zucchini to grow large enough to become the size of your arm. I actually never minded when the zucchini got that big because then I could stuff it with goodness and make batches upon batches of baked goodies.
Sadly I’m no longer as close to my mom since she lives in Minnesota (soon Utah!). This year I wasn’t expecting to get any free zucchini and figured I’d have to pick some up at the local’s farmer’s market. Turns out that Tony’s mom grew zucchini in her garden and so she kindly has been supplying me with all the zucchini I could ever dream of. I still have three left and have already baked three batches of muffins and two loaves of bread. Perhaps it’s time for a little something savory? Oh la la.
On Saturday I met up with Tony’s family and attended his Grandmother’s 95th birthday party. You guys, she’s amazing! She still lives on her own, cooks for herself and is in great health. Over the past year, I’ve gotten fairly close with her; probably because I bring her all the treats I make and she just so happens to love cookies as much as I do. This makes me happy, of course. I actually baked the nutella-stuffed chocolate chip beauties for her party; it always blows my mind how much people truly love those cookies.
Remember when I mentioned that I was going to try be a little bit healthier when it came to food choices? Well I’ve been pretty dedicated… so far anyway. Eating better and enjoying more refined sugar sweets made with wholesome ingredients has made me feel incredible, lighter and maybe a little bit leaner. Isn’t it funny how even the smallest changes in your food choices can make a BIG difference? I think so.
Healthy carrot cake muffins for breakfast thanks to this nutritious recipe packed with whole grains and healthy fats.
Healthy muffins! That taste like carrot cake! Oh, I think this might just be a dream come true.
Truth be told, carrot cake gets me every single time. I fell in love with it a few years ago and my craving for cake has quadrupled since then. I can’t get over the spices, flavor, and that thick-n-creamy cream cheese frosting that pairs so wonderfully with the cake. I’m not sure it gets better.
Do you guys have any city crushes? You know cities that you totally fall in love with from the moment you arrive. I have a few on my list including San Diego, Chicago and now… Kansas City!
I attended a conference in KC over the weekend and quickly developed a crush on the quaint little city that’s bursting with vegan bakeries, scrumptious food and beautiful parks. The fall foliage and sunny 70 degree weather made it even more loveable. I will do a recap soon of all of my bakery and restaurant visits along with more info on the conference fun.
Tony is here (Minnesota) visiting me before we head out to Chicago for a few weeks. He is going to help me look for apartments so that I can potentially make a move to the windy city! I’m beyond excited, but I really need to find a great spot with a nice kitchen, so fingers crossed.
Since I know that I’ll be gone from my kitchen for a few weeks, I need to get caught up on recipe development. That means that piles of cookies, ALL THE THINGS pumpkin and of course, lots of muffins.
Over the past three months, I’ve been on a real fruit obsession. Fruit smoothies, shakes, muffins and jams galore! If you remember, I even put blueberries in a cookie (OMG so good!).
One fruit I’m absolutely in love with are the organic braeburn apples from Trader Joe’s. They’re one of my favorite healthy snacks especially when dipped in peanut butter or vanilla greek yogurt. I feel so lucky when I find them because they have the sweetest flavor and best crunchy texture. Lord knows I’m already excited for apple season so I can bake up my famous apple crisp and warm up some hearts.
These pumpkin chocolate chip protein oat muffins are absolutely delicious! They’re made with a scoop of protein powder and greek yogurt to provide extra protein. Plus no refined sugars added and they’re gluten free!
Chocolate zucchini muffins get a healthy makeover in partnership with Blue Diamond Almond Breeze! Made with whole wheat flour and no butter or refined sugars (besides chocolate chips). You’re going to love these perfectly moist, insanely delicious muffins!
Zucchini season is HERE because my Pinterest feed told me so. I even made a board devoted to all things zucchini (shameless plug so you can follow me!).
If you’re thinking that you would never put zucchini in a baked good, it’s time to get out of your comfort zone because these muffins are MIND-BLOWING and full of chocolate love with zero zucchini taste.
I love when vegetables can taste like chocolate, don’t you?
Cream cheese, raspberries and chocolate chips come together in this light and fluffy whole wheat muffin! Great for when you’re on the go or when you need a sweet healthy snack. Ready in under 30 mins!
I have been working out like a crazy person. This means I actually work up at 7am on Sunday to go to yoga sculpt. Please note that I’m definitely not a morning person. Total night owl. For example, I’m writing this post at midnight.
Regardless, working out makes me feel wonderful. With each workout, I’m gaining strength and confidence. In addition, I’m also really trying to clean up my diet and focus on high protein, whole foods. Have you ever noticed that after a week or two of eating healthier, your body actually starts to crave more nutritious foods? I have! Lately I can’t stop eating carrots and mustard, or fresh oranges and grapefruit. Smoothies, too! I have been making a smoothie every morning and night.
But, here’s the problem: I’m prone to depriving myself; it almost comes natural to me because of past habits during college. I’m not sure I’m ready to share those details with you all just yet but now that I’m a little bit older, I’ve realized that it’s all about balance and appreciating yourself, your body and soul, and enjoying those little treats and moments in life.
And you know what’s the perfect indulgence to me? A fluffy, warm chocolate chip muffin spread with crunchy almond butter. Of course, I just had to make them better for you…
There are so many reasons why these muffins are THE BEST and of course, I have to explain just about every single one of them.
Chocolate chips and raspberries: That combo is always a winner in my weirdo mind and this muffin is balanced just right with sweetness from the chocolate and a little tartness from the raspberries, but you can totally make it any combo you’d like!
Whipped Cream cheese: The whipped cream cheese is actually lighter in fat and calories so it replaces any butter that would normally be in a muffin recipe, yet still keeps these low in fat. Plus, you get a little smidgen of cream cheese flavor that makes you think you’re enjoying something much more indulgent.
Whole Wheat Pastry Flour: I love whole wheat pastry flour for it’s light and fluffy texture. If you don’t have it available, feel free to use regular whole wheat or white whole wheat.
Brown Sugar: I only used 1/3 cup of brown sugar in this recipe, but I’m confident you could reduce it to 1/4 cup with great results.