Peanut Banana Chocolate Ganache Bites

Decadent peanut banana chocolate ganache bites plate

YAY! It's my annual chocolate recipe. Perfectly timed for Valentine's Day.

If you're new to following me you might wonder why a dietitian is sharing a chocolate recipe. Quite simply, because food is more than just fuel for our bodies. Food feeds our minds and soul too. Denying ourselves the pleasure of food isn't healthy.

This recipe is super simple to make. And WOW is it decadent. Like the middle of a truffle without that pesky shell. I first made experimented by making this in regular-sized muffin tins and it was simply too much (and believe you me, it takes a lot of rich chocolate to make me come to that conclusion!). Mini muffin tins make the perfect size. Just like those 2 bite brownies, but healthier for you and more decadently delicious.

These really are for dark chocolate lovers. So they may be more of an adult treat. But you never know. Make them with your kids and see what their verdict is.

The inspiration for this recipe was from chocolatecoveredkatie.com

If you follow these lifestyles, you'll be happy to know that these heavenly bites are vegan, paleo, gluten-free and have no added sugar.

You can easily make them peanut-free by omitting the peanuts. Go completely nut-free (note: they do contain coconut) or substitute pistachios, chopped almond, or hazelnuts for the topping.

Peanut Banana Chocolate Ganache Bites Ingredients

  • 4 TBSP coconut butter (Note: This isn't the same as coconut oil. Also, if your jar of coconut butter has separated, scrape off the oil and use the lower level - the coconut butter)
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 3 TBSP cocoa powder
  • 3 small pinches salt
  • 4 TBSP unsalted peanuts

Peanut Banana Chocolate Ganache Bites Directions

This recipe happens really quickly so you'll want to prepare all your ingredients before you start cooking.

  1. On a small plate, mash the banana really well.
  2. Chop peanuts.
  3. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the coconut butter, stirring constantly.
  4. Add the mashed banana. Stir constantly until completely combined.
  5. Lower heat. Add cocoa powder and 1 pinch of salt. Mix well and remove from the heat.
  6. Moving quickly, spoon into a mini muffin tin. Be careful, the mixture is very hot.
  7. Top with chopped peanuts and sprinkle with salt.
  8. Freeze for 1 hour.
  9. Enjoy!

Note: The ganache bites are at the absolute perfect texture when eaten after freezing for 1 hour. If you make them ahead of time and freeze for longer, remove them from the freezer and warm them to room temperature for at least 30 minutes (otherwise they'll be rock hard).

Check out these other healthy chocolate recipes:

Chocolate Chia Pudding

Chocolate Nut Spread

Mint Chocolate Whip

NGC: Are You Drinking Enough?

are you drinking enough

Want to know a subtle and sneaky thing that could be making you feel tired and irritable? Giving you headaches? The answer is mild dehydration. Or, on the flip-side, drinking enough fluids is a super easy way to give you more energy and improve your mood. Who doesn’t want that this time of year (and all year long)?! Being adequately hydrated will also help you digest foods well, circulate nutrients throughout your body, and keep you regular. Which only leaves one question: how much do you need to drink? Is the popular advice of “8 glasses of water a day” right? In short, no.

Are You Drinking Enough?

How much fluids you need depends on your body size and how much you sweat. A good starting place is:

  • 2.2 Litres (9 cups) for women
  • 3 Litres (12 cups) for men

Your needs will vary from this if you’re particularly petite, large, physically active, or vacationing in a hot location. Your individual sweet spot is the amount of fluids where your pee is clear to light yellow, but you’re not needing to pee non-stop all day and night. Start with the amount I’ve listed above and adjust to find your sweet spot.

Now I need to address a couple of things that you’ve likely heard about drinks and hydration:

  1. Coffee is dehydrating. Myth. That’s right, this one isn’t true. Coffee and tea aren’t dehydrating. Go ahead and count them towards your cups of fluid per day.
  2. Alcohol is dehydrating. True. Yes, alcohol is dehydrating. (Now you know why I planned this Nutrition Game Changer for the holiday season.) Add an extra 1 – 2 glasses of fluids for each glass of wine, beer, or booze that you drink.

So, What Counts Towards Drinking Enough Fluids?

  • Water (plain, fizzy, or flavoured).
  • Juice (fruit or veggie).
  • Coffee, tea, herbal tea.
  • Milk and plant-based milk alternatives.
  • Broth and soup.
  • Pop (or “soda” for you American readers). Yes, it does count. But relying on it frequently will send you over the recommended amounts of sugar.
  • Electrolyte drinks (e.g. sports dinks). They have a role if you are exercising for 1 hour or longer and/or sweating excessively (e.g. in a hot and humid location, wearing heavy equipment). That sweat you’re losing is salty so you need to replace both fluids and the salt (a.k.a. electrolytes). Athletes in training will have additional fluid and nutrient needs. That’s a different situation than I’m covering in this post. If it describes you, I recommend connecting with a sports dietitian.

[Note: a Nutrition Game Changer (NGC) is a food or habit that has made a big impact on the nutritional health of clients I’ve worked with. And, in my life too. Some may call these nutrition hacks. But I'm not a fan of that phrase. I share one NGC each month.]

Curious about how I can help you achieve your health and nutrition goals? Schedule a (free) call to find out.

Baked Avocado Eggs

Baked avocado egg

I'm a long-time lover of avocados and so I'm excited to see that many others have realized how delicious they are. And, that their healthy fat is not something of which to be afraid. Browsing around Pinterest for some cooking inspiration (I love Pinterest), I found this recipe. I like to give credit where credit is due, so here's the original recipe: http://www.popsugar.com/fitness/Baked-Eggs-Avocado-Recipe-30787252 This baked avocado egg recipe has all the creamy deliciousness of an eggs benny - without all the work of Hollandaise sauce. In other words, it's a perfect recipe for Easter breakfast. Finger Food Version: Cook a few minutes longer until both the whites and yolk are set (it's recommended that babies under 12 months don't have runny egg yolks). Cut the egg and avocado into finger-food size pieces. Or, spread on long, skinny pieces of toast.

Baked Avocado Egg Ingredients:

1 avocado

2 eggs

salt & pepper

Optional: toast

Baked Avocado Egg Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Slice the avocados in half. Remove the pit. Scoop out enough flesh from the avocado,  so the egg will fit in the centre. Reserve this flesh for another recipe/snack.
  3. Slice a small piece off the back of the avocado halves so that they will sit flat without rolling around. Place the avocados in a small baking dish, making sure they fit tightly. If your dish is too big, scrunch up a piece of tin foil to fill the space.
  4. Season the avocado halves with salt and pepper. Crack an egg into each avocado half.
  5. Place in the oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Cooking time will depend on the size of your eggs and avocados. And, how you like our eggs cooked.
  6. Enjoy scooped directly out of the avocados. Or, spread on top of toast.

Check out more healthy, delicious recipes here.

Sugar-Free Easter Ideas

sugar-free easter ideas

Halloween, Christmas, Valentine's Day, Easter, there are so many holidays that involve a lot of candy. I'm often asked by health-conscious parents how to handle these holidays. Here are some sugar-free Easter ideas to keep all the fun of the season, without all the sugar.

Sugar-Free Easter Ideas: Create Non-Candy Fun

There are lots of ways to celebrate Easter that don’t involve sweets. Examples include:

  • Join your child to decorate the house with Easter themed decorations.
  • Colour Easter Eggs. Extend the fun by first creating your own natural dyes.
  • Plant some veggies in the garden or pots.
  • Bake a low-sugar treat such as carrot cupcakes.

Next week I'll be sharing a fun, healthy (and delicious) recipe that's perfect for Easter.

Take Advantage of Toddlers’ and Preschoolers’ Naiveté

Toddlers and preschoolers have very short attentions pans. Use this to your advantage. Who says that Easter egg hunts need to involve finding more than 3 – 5 small pieces of chocolate? If we’re really honest, it’s we adults, not the kids, who enjoy longer games because we have a vested interest in reliving our childhoods.

Sugar-Free Easter Ideas: Create a New Family Tradition

Who says that it has to be chocolate that kids find in Easter egg hunts. Why not hide the eggs that you dyed? Or, how about hiding snack-size Ziploc baggies full of mini carrots? Easter bunnies eat carrots after all. Get your thinking cap on to invent a new, fun family tradition that doesn’t involve candy.

Sugar-Free Easter Ideas: Include Non-Candy Basket Stuffers

There are all sorts of fun and seasonal ideas to include in Easter baskets. Some examples include:

  • Spring or Easter-themed stickers
  • Arts and craft supplies
  • An Easter-themed colouring book and crayons
  • Veggie or flower seeds
  • Baby animal figurines
  • Story books on seasonal topics such as baby animals or planting seeds
  • Hair accessories in spring colours

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