Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Lentil, Barley and Date Salad

Looking for a hearty salad or side side dish?  This salad is very filling and versatile.  It can be served warm or cold. 
  • 3/4 cup French green lentils
  • 3/4 cup pearl barley rinsed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 diced green onions or chives
  • 1/2 cup chopped dates
  • 1/2 cup roasted pumpkin seeds*
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup or honey
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
* I like "candying" the pumpkin seeds by heating them up a frying pan with 2 teaspoons of maple syrup for 2 minutes.

  1. Fill a medium pot with 6 cups of water and add lentils, barley and a bay leaf.  Bring to a boil and cook uncovered for 20 minutes or until both are tender. Drain and rinse with cold water to cool. Remove bay leaf.
  2. In a medium bowl stir in remaining ingredients and stir to combine.  Add cooked lentils and barley and stir again to fully mix.  Serve warm or cold

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Stewed Pinto Beans (Gluten and Dairy Free)

Perhaps this is more of a winter meal but today is a rainy day and I felt like something hearty and warm.  This is a simple easy recipe and can feed many.  I soaked my pinto beans from dry beans but you can use canned ones as well.  Depending on how much of a "sauce" you want with your beans you can always adjust the amount of water.  I made this in a crock pot but it can also be done on the stove or in the oven.


  • 6 cups cooked pinto beans (3 cans of pinto beans)
  • 2 cups pureed tomato
  • 1 cup water (adjust depending on desired amout of sauce)
  • 2 diced carrots cooked until soft
  • 1 diced onion
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup (optional)
  • sea salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a frying pan heat and add diced onion.  Cook onion until very soft about 5-10 minutes.  Add garlic and cook another 2 minutes.
  2. Add diced carrot into a pan with water and cook until soft.
  3. Puree the carrots with the water.
  4. Add all ingredients into a crock pot and cook on low for 4-6 hours.
  5. Remove bay leafs.  Serve over brown rice if desired.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Pineapple Quinoa Salad with Roasted Cashews (Dairy, Gluten and Sugar Free)

Summer season is finally approaching and with warmer weather comes a desire for more salads.  This quinoa salad makes a great meal on its own or can be used as a side dish.  It is very hearty with the addition of the cashews and pumpkin seeds.  We love the combination of the pineapple and cilantro where sweet and fresh meet.

  • 1 1/2 cup quinoa (soak for 1-2 minutes, then rinse to remove the bitter saponin coating)
  • 3 cups water
  • 1/4 cup shredded red pepper
  • 1 cup chopped pineapple (fresh or from frozen)
  • 1/4 cup cilantro
  • 1/3 cup raw cashews
  • 1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup shreded unsweetened coconut
  • 1 lemon juiced (1/4 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • sea salt to taste

  1. Add quinoa and water to a pot and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and let it cook for 10-15 minutes until tender.
  2. Heat a frying pan and add cashews, pumpkin seeds and coconut. At a low medium heat, stir frequently and let roast 3-5 minutes or until golden brown.
  3. To create the dressing, in a small dish add lemon juice, olive oil, ginger and sea salt and wisk.
  4. In a medium size bowl combine red pepper, pineapple, cilantro and chives/green onions. 
  5. Add dressing to the bowl and stir to combine.
  6. Add cooked quinoa to medium bowl and stir to fully coat.
  7. Serve warm or cold.  It tastes great either way.

Friday, May 11, 2018

Lemon Chia Pudding (Dairy, Gluten and Refined Sugar Free)

My husband's favourite flavour is lemon so whenever I can I try to make something with this flavour.  Chia pudding is also a family favourite.  I hope you like this pudding as much as we do.

  • 1 1/2 cups coconut milk or milk of choice
  • 1/4 + 1 tablespoon cup chia seeds
  • 1 lemon zested
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • 1-2 drops lemon oil (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup or sweetener of choice
  • 1/4 teaspoon or more turmeric for colour (optional)
  • pinch of sea salt
  • shredded coconut for topping (optional)


  1. Make the chia pudding by adding all ingredients into a bowl except shredded coconut.  Let sit for set in the fridge for about 1 hour or overnight.  If possible stir once in between so the chia seeds don't stick together.
  2. Dish into bowls and sprinkle with coconut if desired.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Chocolate Banana Cake with Peanut Butter Chocolate Frosting (Dairy and Refined Sugar Free with Egg Free Option)

I definitely have aa sweet tooth and don't mind dessert once in a while but I still have parameters.  It can't be too sweet and I prefer more natural sweeteners.  Here is a delightful cake that had flavour and suited a special dinner with family.
Cake Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk mixed with ½ tsp apple cider vinegar (let sit 5 minutes)
  • 1 3/4 cups flour (spelt/all purpose)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/3 cocoa powder 
  • 1 egg or 1 flax egg
  • 2 ripe mashed or pureed bananas 
  • 1/3 cup grapeseed oil
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/3 cup diary free chocolate chips (optional)

Frosting Ingredients
  • 1/3 cup natural peanut butter (homemade)
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons xylitol or palm sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 - 6 tablespoons non dairy milk depending on desired consistency 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and grease a 9 x 9 baking dish.
  2. In a small dish combine milk and vinegar and let sit
  3. In a large mixing bowl combine all dry ingredients.
  4. In a seperate bowl combine bananas, oil, maple syrup, vanilla, chocolate chips and vinegared milk.
  5. Add wet ingredients into dry ingredients and stir until combined.
  6. Pour into prepared dish.
  7. Bake for 40-50 minutes until inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  8. Combine all ingredients for the frosting and whip until smooth.
  9. Pour/spread over cake when cake is still warm.  Let sit and cool to room temperature.  Add chocolate shavings if desired!
  10. Enjoy!