Protein Waffles

img_9812I love waffles. Waffles however, are full of carbs, gluten, and a lot of sugar in many recipes. So as I’ve been doing the latest DietBet (Mama Laughlin’s Dietbet) I wanted to have something for brunch that was a little healthier than the traditional waffle. Now, I do have a gluten free, sugar free belgian waffle recipe that I made by modifying my favorite traditional belgian waffle recipe, but gluten free flour is not low calorie.

I decided I wanted to try some protein waffles, so I came upon this recipe for protein waffles from Kim’s Cravings and decided to give it a try. The first try was a disaster, because my waffle maker which was nonstick died, and my mom gave me hers since she never uses it, and it is apparently NOT nonstick. I ended up with pieces of protein waffle that I drizzled coconut almond butter on. Not photogenic. I did make some changes but they are really small. Visit Kim’s website for her recipe, I changed it up because I have only unsweetened/unflavored protein powder and I also wanted to use a whole egg.

Protein Waffles
Original recipe by Kim’s Cravings, I barely modified this is basically her recipe.

Ingredients

1 scoop unflavored protein powder
1 whole egg
6-10 drops of vanilla liquid stevia
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
dash of cinnamon ground cinnamon

You will probably also need some water, depending on how thick the mixture is. When I used whey protein I only needed about a tablespoon, but with the pea protein I needed 1/4 cup or so.

Directions

Heat waffle iron.

In a small mixing bowl, beat the egg with a fork, then add stevia and vanilla extract.
Add dry ingredients, baking powder, cinnamon, and then protein powder.
At this point, once all dry ingredients are mixed and there are no lumps, determine if you need to add water. Add water one tablespoon at a time until it is at the right consistency.

Once the waffle iron is hot, spray it with non-stick cooking spray. Add the batter to the iron and cook according to the waffle iron’s instructions. This recipe makes 1-2 waffles depending on the consistency of the batter. It definitely makes no more than one serving.

img_9826I had no trouble getting two golden brown waffles with pea protein but with whey protein it would only make 1-1/2.

The first time I tried the recipe, I used my go-to protein powder, Isopure unflavored whey. When I started using protein powder, I did a lot of research on which type to get and I decided to get an unflavored kind because it is more versatile. At the time I was interested in making sure that I was getting enough protein, as someone who eats mostly vegetarian, so I was dumping into coffee in the morning, soup, adding it to salads, basically any meal I wanted to add some protein to.

I have wanted to switch to a plant-based protein so I recently purchased NOW foods unflavored pea protein.

img_9810The whey protein did not make enough batter to cover the waffle iron, hence the holes. They also did not get that pretty golden brown, the first picture has coconut almond butter on it so that makes it look a little more brown. They were very crispy though, and tasted slightly stale and dry, probably because of the whey protein. The second time I tried the recipe, I added 2 tablespoons of Mama’s all purpose almond blend gluten free flour which did make them fluffier but they still tasted kinda stale.

The third time I made them, I tried my new pea protein powder and it was WAY better. The ones with the pea protein turned out much more golden brown, they didn’t taste stale, and with the 1/4 cup of water which  I needed to add to get the right consistency – that pea protein is THICK! Damn. Be advised that this stuff makes everything very thick. With some crunchy almond butter they were absolutely perfect and I want to eat them every day!!!

img_9945What’s great about this is that they are super easy to make, they take hardly any prep time at all, so you could easily have these on a weekday morning. You can top them with whatever you like, I used about a tablespoon of almond butter and around a tablespoon of organic 100% maple syrup. These two easily came out of the recipe although as I’ve mentioned, there is significantly more water needed than with the whey protein.

Next time I will make extra and freeze them, but unlike my gluten free non-protein waffle recipe, they are so easy and quick there’s really no need to make them ahead of time.

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Peanut butter “fluff”

This stuff is so good, it should be called “crack fluff!” My boyfriend was complaining that he can’t take apples as a snack to work because he can’t find this whipped peanut butter he likes to dip it in anymore. Of course it is some sort of processed thing and I’m sure loaded with sugar. I decided to search pinterest and I found this awesome recipe!

It’s so good! I, of course, changed it up. I used:
1/2 cup Fage 0% greek yogurt
3 Tbsp Earthbalance natural peanut butter
2 Tbsp local honey

I’ve never used agave nectar and I actually just read an article about how it’s no better than any other type of sugar. I also like using local honey because supposedly it helps with allergies. I have no idea if that’s true or not but the local stuff is also a really good price at the local co-op. I think I will add a bit more peanut butter next time, the tangyness of the greek yogurt still really comes through. I used a little less than 2 T of honey, probably more like 1-1/2 to 1-3/4. The original recipe at Cookin’ & Kickin’ notes that it keeps in the fridge for 4 days. If it lasts 4 days, I would be very surprised! My boyfriend actively resists healthy things, he doesn’t like greek yogurt, so I suggested he modify the recipe to 1/2 cup sweetened vanilla yogurt and 3 T peanut butter. If he makes it, I will report back about that. Make sure you’re not using a peanut butter that has sugar or sweetener in it, if you do omit the honey!

Total Cheat – Chocolate Bread Pudding

My instagram followers might remember the Coconut Tres Leches cake that I made for Mother’s Day.

Coconut Tres Leches cake

I found three different recipes that I liked the sound of, and combined them. I think if I had left it at that, it would’ve been ok – but I decided at the last minute to make it gluten free and use coconut flour. It made sense, it’s a coconut cake, why not use coconut flour? Different websites cautioned that using coconut flour is tricky and it’s best to stick with proven recipes, but the main problem is that the items turn out dry and I figured I was soaking the cake in three milks so that wouldn’t be an issue.

WRONG!

I made the only dry Tres Leches cake in the history of the world. My mom loved it, but it was very disappointing to me. Another mistake I made was making it a two layer cake. I found one of those lifestyle blogs that makes even the most chic, together women feel like they’re shabby underachievers (you know the ones I mean, Goop anyone?) She made a lovely two layer Tres Leches cake, I’m not sure how. I made a cake where the top layer slid around when you tried to slice it, partially because the cake ended up dry to the coconut flour but partially because whipped cream icing doesn’t work as well on a two layer cake. I should’ve known, the restaurants make their Tres Leches cake in a rectangle pan, I needed to do it that way too.

When Father’s Day rolled around, I had learned my lesson. Sometimes, we want to indulge. A cheat can be all cheat, especially for holidays and special occasions. So I decided to make chocolate bread pudding, in all it’s gluteny, unhealthy glory. My father is huge fan of the Double-chocolate bread pudding from Red Fish Grill in New Orleans, the whole family is! I found a recipe that seemed simple enough and decided to see what happened.

Bread

Chocolate Bread pudding

2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
4 eggs
¾ c. packed light brown sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups milk (normally I’d sub almond milk, but I didn’t want this dessert to disappoint!)
4 cups cubed stale bread

Melt 1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips, I did this in the microwave. Add, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, eggs and milk. Add bread and let stand 30 minutes, occasionally stirring. Ladle half of the bread mixture into a loaf pan. Spread remaining 1 cup of chocolate chips on top. Ladle the rest of the bread mixture. Sprinkle a few chocolate chips on the top.

Bake about 55 minutes. Serve warm with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. Serves 10.

I found this recipe on Pinterest, it was actually on BeliefNet. I don’t like mixing religion and anything else so I’m not linking to the original recipe but you can find it by googling “Chocolate bread pudding beliefnet.” This recipe turned out AWESOME. It was a big hit! I ate mine with some vanilla ice cream, my dad opted for ice cream and whipped cream both. It’s definitely not low-cal, or gluten free, or sugar free, or dairy free (although I think it would be fine with almond milk!) but it was very yummy for a special occasion, every-once-in-a-while cheat.

Chocolate Bread Pudding

Overnight oats (review)

Tropical overnight oats

Overnight oats are something that I was a little hesitant to try. I haven’t eaten oatmeal since I was a child, back then the instant maple & brown sugar was a favorite. A couple times over the years when I was trying to be “healthier” I’d read something about how oatmeal was healthy and grab a variety pack of instant oatmeal from the grocery aisle. I always added sugar, and it never seemed like anything special to me so I usually ate a few packets and then forgot about it.

Cut to my Pinterest obsession. Like a lot of things, I was behind the crowd with Pinterest. I love instagram, but Pinterest just seemed like a waste of time – sharing things that other people shared didn’t make a lot of sense. But during my internship this spring, a fellow intern was telling me about all these creative ideas she had for decorating her new apartment, and they all came from Pinterest! So I checked it out, and unlike the first time I looked at it, I was hooked.

I started my Healthy + Fit board full of things that I wanted to try, healthy recipes and different workouts. That’s where I came across overnight oats.

peach cinnamon overnight oats

I was intrigued at the idea of just mixing up some oats and almond milk with fruit and letting it sit in the fridge overnight. It seemed so simple, would it be any good? I decided to try it because I had purchased some rolled oats and then couldn’t remember where I had seen a recipe that called for them. (oops!) I saw Oh my veggies Coconut Mango overnight oatmeal on Pinterest so I decided to give it a try. Typical of me though, I modified the recipe. I don’t think I’ve ever made any recipe I’ve ever found without modifying it in some way! I changed this recipe because I couldn’t find unsweetened coconut in my regular grocery store, my mango got mushy before I sliced it, and I wanted to use honey rather than agave. This was a lot of poor planning on my part – it really could not have turned out any better though!

peach cinnamon overnight oats

I am eating this 5-6 days a week for breakfast now. It’s quick, it’s easy, it’s cheap, it’s versatile, it’s vegan, it’s healthy – there’s really no downside to these! They have a hearty feel to them without being heavy. I feel like I’m having a good breakfast and they taste amazing.

My tweaks are pretty simple. I like sweet foods but for breakfast, I don’t want something that tastes like dessert, so 1-1/2 tablespoons seemed like a lot to me. I drizzle about 1 teaspoon of honey on the oats prior to adding the milk & fruit and stirring it all together. The peach cinnamon combo is really simple.

Peach Cinnamon Overnight Oats

1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 teaspoon honey
half a peach, chopped into bite sized pieces
1 scoop unflavored protein powder (optional)*

Stir it all together, refrigerate overnight, and then sprinkle some cinnamon on it the next morning before you eat it.

Nutrition:

225 calories
8 grams protein
39 grams carbs
5 grams fat
* don’t forget to add nutrition info for protein powder, if used.

coconut overnight oats

It’s less clean, but to make these take literally less than a minute to make, instead of using fresh fruit use a fruit cup. Read the label on those though. They’re ALL different. It’s obvious you don’t want the one that’s packed in syrup, but watch what they’re packed in! One little cup can easily be over 100 calories, some have artificial sweeteners, some are packed in juice and have more calories but no artificial sweeteners. I’ve only come across one that was packed in water and had no artificial sweetener. Each fruit is different with the same manufacturer too, so don’t expect Del Monte mandarin oranges is the same as Del Monte peaches. Always read the label! For the first photo above, the tropical overnight oats, I used a Del Monte tropical fruit in juice, so it’s a few more calories than a no sugar added cup but it as no artificial sweeteners.

For the original, tropical recipe, please visit Oh my veggies. I’m new to this whole food blogging thing, and I don’t know the etiquette of writing about and using other people’s recipes but since I didn’t really change much about this one I don’t feel right about reposting it 🙂