Pumpkin Muffins 

This morning felt like a great day to bake. I love the fall when pumpkin comes back into season. I decided to make pumpkin muffins and since there was some leftover pumpkin purée I made pumpkin pancakes, too. I based my muffin recipe from one out of the cookbook Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison:

As usual I made some changes… 

  • I left out the chopped candied ginger. Instead of butter, I used melted coconut oil. 
  • Instead of sweet potato, I used pumpkin. 
  • I had some leftover sour cream so used that instead of buttermilk. (To make these dairy free it would be easy to use ripe banana instead of buttermilk.) 
  • Instead of brown sugar I used coconut sugar. 
  • I also reduced the molasses to 1/4 cup. 
  • Finally, I use gluten-free flour and added a little pumpkin pie spice to the mix. 

Next time I will add a teaspoon of vanilla. These muffins turned out very moist and are delicious! Enjoy!

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Pumpkin Pancakes

I love the fall with that certain smell in the air, cooler weather, and the colorful leaves. I also love the bounty of the fall harvest with winter squashes like pumpkins available! Recently I decided to experiment and make some gluten-free and dairy-free pumpkin pancakes. It was actually pretty easy with a few substitutions/additions. They are delicious!



Delicious Pumpkin Pancakes!

  • 1 ½ cups milk (I used a mix of coconut milk & almond milk)
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 egg
  • Vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoons vinegar
  • 2 cups flour (I used 1 cup gluten-free quick cooking oats, ½ cup buckwheat flour, ½ cup gluten free flour mix)
  • ¼ (or less) teaspoon of stevia (or 2 tablespoons of brown sugar)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (more is okay)
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon salt


  1. Mix all wet ingredients
  2. Mix all dry ingredients
  3. Sift dry ingredients into the wet ingredients (do half at a time)
  4. Mix until just combined
  5. Heat a skillet to medium high heat
  6. Once hot, spoon into pan (use about ¼ cup batter for each pancake) and let cook until little bubbles start to show
  7. Flip pancakes and cook on other side (adjust heat down if necessary)
  8. Enjoy!
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Zucchini Banana Bread


  • ¾ cup coconut oil
  • ½ cup sugar (use less)
  • ½ cup maple syrup (use less)
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 cups flour (1 c Pamela’s; 1 c buckwheat; 1 c Bob’s)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 ½ cups grated zucchini
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped almonds (or other nut) (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Combine oil, sugar, maple syrup, vanilla, bananas, and eggs until well blended
  3. In separate bowl mix together flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon
  4. Add flour mixture to the wet mixture and combine until all dry mix is incorporated.
  5. Fold in the zucchini
  6. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts if including them.
  7. Spread in an 11×17 pan and spread the batter evenly
  8. Bake for 40 minutes. Done when a knife or toothpick poked in the center come out clean
  9. Enjoy!
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FODMap Diet Soup Recipe

Big pot of Spring Veggies SoupRecently I worked with a client who is following a very limited diet. The FODMAPs diet is not very well known, but it was developed to help people avoid a collection of foods to which a surprisingly large number of people are highly sensitive. For these people, who react negatively to these particular foods, paying attention to the FODMAPs in their diets has helped them avoid often debilitating, embarrassing, and painful digestive issues. To learn more about what FODMAPs are and who might benefit from trying out the FODMAPs diet there is a a good summary here on Mark’s Daily Apple

In doing a little research, I found that there aren’t many good recipes online that follow this diet, so I wanted to share the soup recipe that I made with my client. She gave me a list of the foods that she does well with right now, so for some people there may be ingredients to leave out or others to add in. You can easily alter this to use a wider variety of vegetables.

Vegetable Soup Recipe

2 big bunches of chard stalks (chopped)
3-4 Celery stalks (chopped)
3-4 Tbsp. coconut Oil
2 Tbsp. cumin
1 Tbsp. each turmeric & coriander
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 Tbsp. each tarragon and oregano
2-3 Tbsp. grated ginger
~8 cups water
Salt to taste
2 bunches carrots with carrot tops (we used both)


  1. First, I wanted to find a way to have good flavor for the soup without any onions, garlic, fennel or other FODMAPs foods. So the first step was to cut the leafy green part off of chart stalks. Set aside the greens to use later, chop the chard stalks into small pieces. We also used a small amount of celery, chopped.
  2. Sauté the chard stalks and the celery with coconut oil and some salt in a soup pot for about 5 minutes on medium low heat
  3. Add: cumin, coriander, turmeric and a little cinnamon and stir. I always add seasonings by feel, so you may want to play with the above amounts to fit your taste buds.
  4. Next add the tarragon, oregano, and ginger (stir again)
  5. Add ~8 cups of water and bring it to a boil, then turn down to simmer. It’s helpful to boil it ahead if you can, so that it’s hot when you add it.
  6. Next add chopped carrots and carrot tops
  7. Finally add chard (cut into pieces)
  8. Simmer for about 5 to 10 minutes until everything is cooked.
  9. Taste for seasonings and adjust as needed. (The ginger flavor gets a bit stronger over time.)

Ways to easily alter the soup:
– If you are using kale, add it before you add the carrots
– You can add pumpkin to thicken it and for a different flavor
– Add cooked tomatoes
– Add bok choy
– Add scallions, cilantro, or any soft cooking greens such as nettle greens or arugula to the soup at the very end or when you re-heat it
– When you re-heat a serving of soup, you can beat one egg like you would to scramble it, but then add it to the boiling soup. The heat will cook it and you’ll have a thicker soup.
– Add a little bit of lemon juice, mustard or other condiment that you can have.

Adding Meat:
– You can add any cooked meat to the soup. Simply cut into small pieces and add in.
– A great way to cook up ground buffalo meat (or other ground meat): put salt into a frying pan, turn onto medium high and once the pan is hot add the ground buffalo meat. Salt it some more. Break it apart and stir it around as it cooks. Once it’s completely done, you can add the cooked meat to soups or veggie mixtures.

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Bone Broth

Health benefits of Bone Broth
(from this Dr. Mercola article)

  • Bone broth contains valuable minerals in a form your body can easily absorb and use, including calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, silicon, sulfur chondroitin, glucosamine, and a variety of trace minerals
  • The gelatin found in bone broth is a hydrophilic colloid. It attracts and holds liquids, including digestive juices, thereby supporting proper digestion
  • Bone broth also inhibits infection caused by cold and flu viruses, for example, and fights inflammation, courtesy of anti-inflammatory amino acids such as arginine

Bone Broth Recipes

Bone broth is actually very easy to make at home and also very cost effective when you use left over carcass bones that you’d otherwise just throw away. My family has been making bone broth for many years. One of the tricks is to make sure you add vinegar to the pot, which helps to leech the valuable bone minerals into the water. Below are a few different recipes for bone broth. Get creative by adding your own combination of herbs and vegetables!

Roasted Bone Broth: A Chef’s Take – a great creative bone broth recipe

Simple Chicken Bone Broth


  • 2 to 3 pounds of bony chicken parts, such as necks, backs, breastbones, wings and feet (we typically use chicken feet or the left over carcass bones of a whole chicken after we’ve eaten the meat off of it.)
  • 4 quarts cold filtered water
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, cleaned and coarsely chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
  • 1 bunch parsley

Basic Directions:

  1. Fill up a large stockpot (or you can use a large crockpot if you have one) with pure, filtered water.
  2. Add vinegar and onions, carrots, and celery to the water.
  3. Place the chicken bones into the pot.
  4. Bring to a boil, and remove any scum that rises to the top.
  5. Reduce the heat to the lowest setting and let the bones simmer for 12-24 hours.
  6. Adding the fresh parsley about 10 minutes before finishing the stock, as this will add healthy mineral ions to your broth.
  7. Remove bones from the broth with a slotted spoon and strain the rest through a strainer to remove any bone fragments.
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Zucchini Banana Bread muffins

IZucchini muffinsngredients:

  • 1+ cup ripe bananas (3 over ripe)
  • ¼ cup coconut oil
  • ½ cup coconut sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 ¼ cup GF flour (used 1 c Bob’s, ¾ c Pamela’s, ½ cup buckwheat)
  • 1 tsp. each baking powder & baking soda
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 ½ cups shredded zucchini (or summer squash)
  • ½ tsp. salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Cream oil, sugar, vanilla
  3. Add eggs and cream
  4. Mix in bananas
  5. Mix flours, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt
  6. Add to wet mixture
  7. Fold in zucchini
  8. Spoon into muffin tins
  9. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes, then at 325 for ~8 minutes
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Set New Years Intentions

Image by Veronica Rae

Image by Veronica Rae

Happy New Year!

A friend of mine, Veronica Rae, wrote a great article in the Huffington Post about setting intentions for the new year. She shares simple and easy steps to help you do it, too. Click on the link below to find out more.

Rather than create New Year’s resolutions, which often come from a place of lack and frustration, try setting New Year’s intentions. It’s simple, easy and refreshing! Here’s how…

For many years now, I have setting an intention for the year. Why? Well, it helps me stay tuned in and on my path for the year. Setting an intention helps me connect with my Spirit’s plan for the year. It’s freeing to let go of making resolutions that I can’t keep.

Just like Veronica suggests, I center myself, let go of expectations, make sure I’m grounded (i.e. connected to the center of the earth) and in a clear space (feeling calm and peaceful). During the whole process I tune into my intuition. In my mind I ask, what is my intention for this year? Information comes to each of us in different ways. For some people it’s in images, for others it’s in words or feelings, and for some it’s a deep knowing. Whatever works for you is perfect.

2014 intention

My overall intention symbol for 2014

For me it’s helpful to allow colors and images that represent my intentions to show up. Usually the first color or symbol that comes is the right one. It represents the qualities of what I want to create and what I am working on during this next year of my life. Sometimes I count to myself: one, two, three. Now! And then notice what the first color or symbol is that appears in my mind’s eye.

For the past two years I have done water-color paintings of my intention symbols. The image to the right was my over-all symbol for last year (2014). It has hung in my bedroom as a wonderful reminder all year.

I have shared two examples of ways you can tune into your intention for the year. There are may more. Have fun playing with these exercises and see what works for you!

Blessings for an amazing year!!

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A Unity Prayer

The Light of God Surrounds You,

The Love of God Enfolds You,

The Power of God Protects You,

And The Presence of God Watches Over You.

Wherever You are, God Is and All is Well…


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Gluten-Free Brownie Bites

These are super easy! As usual I made a few alterations to the recipe… I left out the peanut flour and used only almond flour (which I made fresh by grinding almonds in a coffee grinder). I used a little less than 1/2 cup coconut sugar since the sunflower butter I used was sweetened.

They are kind of like a chocolate power bar with all the nuts, seeds and the egg whites. Next time I will likely go ahead and use the whole egg instead of just egg whites.

Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes.

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Vegan Ice Cream

Vegan Ice CreamFor a while now it has been clear to me that I don’t do well with dairy, but I still love the occasional ice cream treat. For a while now I have been choosing coconut milk based ice creams instead of dairy, which has made my tummy (and my whole body) happier than eating a dairy based ice cream. Recently I tried cashew & date based chocolate pudding that a friend had made and decided it was high time that I try making my own nut based ice cream. If you like nuts, then you will most likely enjoy this ice cream, too!

First I did a little research and one recipe I looked at was from the website Elana’s Pantry. As usual, I altered things a bit. I don’t have a vitamix or similar type of blender, so I decided to soak my cashews first, which would make blending them easier. Because they had been soaked I used less liquid than her recipe.

Here is the recipe that I ended up making.


  • 1 cup cashews (soaked in water over night & rinsed)
  • 1 1/2 cups almond milk (or other liquid of your choice
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup (you make want a bit more)
  • dash of salt
  • fresh fruit to put on afterward (optional)


  1. Soak cashews in water overnight & rinse them before using them.
  2. Add all ingredients (except fruit) to your blender and blend until smooth
  3. Put liquid mixture into the refrigerator (probably optional, but I thought it might help the process and I didn’t have time to make the ice cream right then)
  4. When you’re ready, place liquid mixture into an ice cream maker and follow the directions of your ice cream maker. (My mixture was ready in less than 20 minutes.)
  5. Scoop out into bowls and serve immediately with fresh fruit. You can also place it into a container and put it into the freezer for later. If you do this, the ice cream will be hard when you take it out of the freezer, so let it stand for 10-15 minutes before scooping it out.
  6. Enjoy!
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